Kathmandu, November 20
The Nepali Congress will hold talks with the ruling parties, including the CPN-UML, Unified CPN-Maoist, Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal and Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum-Democratic in a bid to resolve the Tarai unrest to ensure passage of Constitution Amendment Bill and address issues related to reconstruction authority tomorrow.
The NC has sent invites to the ruling parties to discuss the problems. NC has taken the special initiative to resolve the crisis, said NC spokesperson Dilendra Prasad Badu.
A decision to this effect was taken in a meeting of the party’s office bearers and senior members of the central committee.
Badu said the party leaders also decided to hold meetings and consultations with other forces, including the United Democratic Madhesi Front, on their demands.
The UDMF seeks amendment on some constitutional issues, including the provincial boundaries, and has been agitating in Madhes for more than three months to mount pressure on the major parties. The NC has also called a meeting of its lawmakers representing Madhes to discuss the agendas of agitating Madhesi forces tomorrow.
Badu said the NC would hold more consultations with the political forces in a bid to resolve the Tarai unrest but would not be part of government’s talks team. “We can only take part in parliamentary committee or political mechanism but not a government’s talks team,” he added.
The NC spokesperson said the party leaders were also of the view that the ruling parties should proceed with the Constitution Amendment Bill registered at the Parliament by the NC-led government and hold further negotiations to address the remaining issues.
The Constitution Amendment Bill moved by the NC-led government proposed to ensure proportional inclusion and delineate election constituencies on the basis of population. Badu said his party was of the view that if a deal was sought in a package as demanded by the UDMF on its 11-point demands there could be deadlock, so the best thing would be to ensure passage of the Constitution Amendment Bill which would address two major concerns.
He said the passage of the amendment bill would build pressure on the UDMF to seek negotiated settlement of other issues gradually.
Badu said the NC would also urge the ruling parties not to backtrack on the agreement reached on reconstruction authority during the NC-led government.
According to Badu, the office bearers also objected to the KP Sharma Oli-led government’s decision to cancel some of the political appointments made by Sushil Koirala-led government. He said the NC would urge the ruling parties not to cancel any political appointment made during the Koirala government.
He said CPN-UML affiliated employees’ union was creating hurdles in the functioning of the Nepal Rastra Bank and that would also be discussed with the ruling parties tomorrow.
He said formal invites had already been sent to the ruling parties and they had all informed the NC that they would attend tomorrow’s talks. When asked if NC was taking the talks initiative to take credit for any solution that could be reached, Badu said no single force could resolve the crisis and hence there was no question of NC trying to take credit.
He said the NC would not be part of government’s talks team but would be part of any parliamentary committee or political mechanism that could be formed to address the grievances of the Madhesi forces.
A version of this article appears in print on November 21, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.