Settle integration first, statute-drafting later: Paudel

POKHARA: Nepali Congress vice president Ram Chandra Paudel today said that the new constitution, as desired by the people, would not be possible without first settling the Maoist fighters and their arms.

Talking to party cadres today in Pokhara, Paudel said that the Maoists had resorted to looting of property and paddy of the farmers and unilaterally declared 'federal republican states' by breaching the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).

"Such moves of the Maoists would adversely affect the nascent loktantra and peace process and push the nation back to spiralling conflict," he warned.

Meanwhile, Paudel also urged his party cadres to discard the Maoist threats and work towards consolidating the gains of loktantra.

He said that since the Maoists have been creating terror among common people, it was the NC which should guarantee people their safety.

Paudel also alleged that the Maoists had tricked the people by trying to impose an ideology that had failed elsewhere in the world.

He also accused the UNMIN of keeping disqualified Maoist combatants in cantonments and said the government would not be able to pay salary and perks for them.

Arguing that the NC does not approve of individual influence and domination following the recent Mahasamiti meeting, he claimed that the party in recent time was witnessed to burgeoning intra-party democracy.

Paudel also informed the cadres that the party's general assembly had been put off. Meanwhile, Mohammad Aftab Alam, Minister for Labour and Transport Management, said the NC did not need Maoist lessons on civilian supremacy.

Also, talking to The Himalayan Times in Damauli of Tanahun today, Paudel accused the Maoists of not intending to form the high level political mechanism believed to end the political impasse.

Earlier, Paudel visited a irrigation project near Dumsi in Damauli-9 and a compost manure production site in Parewadanda, Kalesti, Kumaltari and Darai.