Kathmandu, November 19:

Youth leaders of the major political parties said today that the nation has already drifted towards a democratic republic and political stability would not be guaranteed without doing away with monarchy, which never “went together with the people”.

Addressing a talk programme held by the Reporters’ Club, Nepali Congress leader Sujata Koirala said that a debate had started across the country about the future of monarchy, which has now been reduced to a ceremonial institution. She said that NC’s mahasamiti meeting would take an official decision to this effect before going for the constituent assembly polls. She, however, said that main objective of the ongoing peace process was to transform the Maoists into political mainstream.

NC-D leader Bal Krishna Khand said that the meeting of his party’s district committee presidents recommended the party to go for a federal republic order and the party’s mahasamiti meeting would endorse it. “Monarchy is the hurdle for democracy,” he said.

“NC was always in favour of constitutional monarchy since its inception. But district presidents’ meeting took a decision to go for the federal republic system as the monarchy always went against the will of the people,” Khand said. He also said that NC-D’s Tarun Dal was in favour of a referendum to decide the fate of the monarchy. Had the seven-party alliance and the Maoists agreed on the referendum it would have been possible to build a front for a democratic republic, he said.

UML youth leader Yogesh Bhattarai viewed that it would be a betrayal to the people to talk about giving continuity to the monarchy, which does not even exist in people’s mind. The issue of monarchy, which is so much important in Nepal’s politics, should have been decided by the direct vote of the sovereign people, he said, adding that it was an irony that even the Maoists, who fought for a decade to overthrow the monarchy, did not opt for the referendum.

Chandra Bhandari of NC also said that the people are not in favour of any form of monarchy whoever may have advocated for it. “I do not think NC president and PM Girija Prasad Koirala would protect the monarchy which is hated so much by the people. But as a PM, Koirala cannot speak as freely as other leaders about the monarchy,” he said.

Maoist youth leader Krishna KC said that his party did not come to talks after being defeated in battle field and his party wanted to establish a democratic republic order in the country. “It is useless to debate on whether there should be monarchy or not, as people have already discarded it from thier hearts and minds,” he said.

Declare Nepal a republic: Pahadi

Kathmandu: An activist of Civic Movement for Democracy and Peace Krishna Pahadi on Sunday urged people not to demand for execution of any dictator or totalitarian ruler.

“It is not execution we should demand. We should always remember that our movement should not be targeted for revenge against any force. All we want is to make the people fully sovereign country,” he said, while addressing a mass meeting at Khulla Manch. “Our ideology is fundamental freedom and making Nepal a democratic republic,” he said. He said though Nepali people have been suppressed for 238 years, “we should not opt for jungle law.”

Shyam Shrestha, another activist, said that parties should detach their leadership from monarchy before “we welcome a republican Nepal.”

“We urge the prime minister to become the president of Nepal, if he is ready to forget monarchy sincerely,” he said.

Luky Sherpa of the Federation of Nepalese Indigenous Nationalities said that the changes in the country have so far not guaranteed any positive indication for the indigenous people. “We want to see changes in all sectors. The upcoming government should include representatives from all indigenous communities,” she said.

Comic duo Madan Krishna Shrestha and Haribansha Acharya and dozens of singers performed in favour of republic and urged people to show their solidarity in the upcoming election of the constituent assembly. — HNS