Itahari, November 18:

CPN-UML general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal today said that the signing of the comprehensive national peace treaty (CNPT) is being delayed due to dispute between the Nepali Congress (NC) and the CPN (Maoist).

Talking to journalists here, Nepal said: “There is a divergence between the NC and the Maoists on the issue of word selection. We were ready earlier.” Saying that the lack of proper homework was just an excuse, Nepal said there is still dispute between the two sides — the NC and the CPN (Maoist). Terming the NC a “status quo” force and the Maoists as “extreme leftists”, Nepal said: “Some forces are still active for saving the monarchy. However, the CPN-UML is against it.”

Inaugurating a labour camp organised on the occasion of the sixth national conference of the Democratic National Youth Union on Parijat Marg here, Nepal condemned some activities of Maoists. He said CPN-Maoist has a lot to learn from the CPN-UML on how to be a responsible political party. “Supremacy in thinking is not enough; behaviour also should be supreme,” he said.

Nepal said that constituent assembly elections should be held at the earliest for the development of democratic values and social development. “To decide the future of Janajatis, women, indigenous people, disabled and people from different walks of life, we have talked about a referendum,” Nepal said. He claimed the UML is heading towards the referendum on its own strength. Suspicions cropped up over the issue of leading the country towards a republic because of the Maoists’ behaviour, a report from Dharan quoted Nepal as saying today.

Nepal said suspicions have arisen because the Maoists expressed their disapproval of the CPN (UML)’s proposal of deciding the future of monarchy through a referendum.

“The referendum would have been the simplest way to lead the nation to the path of a republic. But the Maoists’ stand has stymied all that,” Nepal said, inaugurating the first national gathering of the Nepal Loktantrik Kirat Rai Association in Dharan.

“Why are the Maoists, who used to scream republican slogans, and the people who want a republic, not talking of these issues now? I am surprised.”