UML seeks new panel to hold talks

Janajati, madhesi agitation

Kathmandu, July 12:

Leaders of the CPN-UML, led by party general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal, this morning met Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala at the latter’s residence and asked him to form a high-level political team to hold meaningful talks with agitating Madhesi groups and Janajatis.

“We asked the PM to form a high-level political committee to hold talks with all the agitating armed Madhesi groups, the Chure Bhavar Ekta Samaj, the Janajatis and Nationalities,” said UML standing committee member Bharat Mohan Adhikari who accompanied Nepal in the meeting.

According to him, they asked the PM to mobilise all possible channels (civil society members, human rights activists and the media) to reach out to the agitating armed groups.

Adhikari said they urged the PM to immediately call a meeting of the eight-party alliance to discuss ways of strengthening the security situation, enhancing the confidence level of civil servants and the police and immediately appointing ambassadors.

He quoted the PM as saying that he was serious about the issues raised by the UML and would call the meeting soon.

Adhidkari told this daily that they told the Prime Minister that most of the political problems would be resolved if the Nepali Congress came up with an official decision in favour

of a democratic republic, and that, too, before the November 22 constituent assembly election. Asked about the PM’s reaction to their proposal, he said, “He did not say anything and just smiled.”

Koirala assured the UML leadership that he was firmly committed to holding the

election. According to Adhikari, Minister for Peace and Reconstruction Ram Chandra Poudel, who was also present at the meeting, said that the issues raised by the UML were relevant needed discussion at an eight-party meeting.