Nc general convention : Pro-monarchy faction may rule the roost

Kathmandu, August 8:

Going by the noises being made in the ecehelons of the Nepali Congress (NC) leadership, the party is unlikely to depart from it beaten course of going along with the constitutional monarchy. It is unlikely to delete references to it in its statute during the general convention through August 30-September 1 here. The faction comprising Shailja Acharya, Taranath Ranabhat, Bhim Bahadur Tamang, Benup Raj Prasai, Mahadev Gurung, Pushkar Ojha, Suresh Malla, Mohammed Aftab Alam and Romi Gauchan are unlikely to agree to the call for a drastic departure from the party’s old stance on monarchy. Alam said the NC would stick to constitutional monarchy “until Girijababu thinks otherwise”. On the other hand, Ram Chandra Paudel and Chakra Prasad Bastola pointed out the need to “change outlook in tune with time”. “Let’s see what happens. We have initiated discussion,” Paudel said. Including Paudel and Bastola, those who insist on the supremacy of the parliament are Mahesh Acharya, Amod Upadhayay, Leela Koirala, Brikesh Chandra Lal, Ram Chandra Tiwari, Siddha Raj Ojha and Dr Shashank Koirala.

Scoffing at the pro-change brigade, Shailja Acharya said NC should be disbanded the day it effects policy changes. Alam sniggered that those seeking a republican set-up or election to the constituent assembly would do well to join the Maoists. Krishna Prasad Sitaula, a central leader close to Koirala, had advised Bastola to drop the idea when the latter last raised the issue in the CWC meeting. “The party has become a one-man show. This rules out what many feel should be debated,” Bastola said when asked about prospects of the party traversing new grounds during the convention.