UDMF dissolves task force, says top leaders to negotiate now

KATHMANDU: The agitating United Democratic Madhesi Front on Tuesday dissolved the three-member task force that was formed to negotiate with the government and three major parties to get their demands addressed.

In a press conference organised by the UDMF here in Kathmandu this afternoon, Tarai-Madhesh Democratic Party's Hridayesh Tripathi announced that the essence of the task force had ended but the talks would continue.

Now the top leaders of UDMF constituents would directly deal with the government and top leaders of major parties, according to him.

Holding them responsible for the stalemate on the negotiations, Tripathi accused the major parties -- Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and UCPN-Maoist -- of being indifferent towards the UDMF's demands.

Second rung leaders of the UDMF constituents had attended the press conference at the TMDP's central office.

The task forces of UDMF and the three major forces had failed to forge any agreement over the UDMF's demands yesterday, as the representatives of major parties said the demands regarding two provinces in the Tarai-Madhes region, identity-based federalism and proportional inclusion could not be met.

Earlier, the UDMF's task force had three representatives -- one each from Federal Social Forum-Nepal, Tarai-Madhesh Democratic Party and Tarai Madhes Sadbhawana Party.

Protesting the December 26 police action against agitators in Nepal-India border in Biratnagar, in which its Chairman Rajendra Mahato was injured, the Sadbhawana Party, however, had not sent its representative to the task force and hand been boycotting talks.

After Mahato's return to Kathmandu and meeting with the top leaders of the major parties, the Sadbhawana Party had taken part in the talks yesterday.

Sadbhawana Party's Laxman Lal Karna was present in the press conference today.

Though the UDMF had formed the task force to hold talks with the major parties, one of its leaders Upendra Yadav, the chairman of Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal, had been publicly saying that the task force would not succeed in forging any agreement.