Parties for consensus on Pancheshwor Project

KATHMANDU: Major political parties today agreed to move ahead with the Pancheshwor Project -- which is also known as Mahakali Treaty -- only after forging national consensus.

The government, as an attempt to forge consensus to forward the project, today briefed the major political parties about the status and progress made during bilateral dialogues between Nepal and India.

"We consented to move ahead with the project by forging consensus," said Nepali Congress chief whip Laxman Ghimire.

During the meeting, UCPN-Maoist and other parties suggested the government to prepare Detailed Project Report (DPR) before taking decision on whether to enter into the construction phase of the project, said CPN-Marxist Leninist leader CP Mainali.

"Since this is the most disputable treaty, it should be taken forward only after forging national consensus," said Narayan Kaji Shrestha 'Prakash' of Unified CPN-Maoist. "The government has provided us the facts related to the project and we can give our view only after delving into it."

He informed that the PM assured all parties to take decision on the issue only after forging national consensus.

No concrete progress has been made to move ahead the project even after 13 years of signing of the Integrated Development of the Mahakali River, including Sarada Barrage, Tanakpur Barrage and Pancheshwor Multipurpose Project, between the two countries.

Minister for Energy Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat said, "Nepal will not have to lose anything from the project. So, this is the right time to continue with the project."