KATHMANDU: The standing committee meeting of the ruling CPN-UML has remained firm on its earlier stance on the major contents of new constitution.

The meeting, chaired by party president Jhala Nath Khanal, decided that the new constitution should have a provision of electing the Prime Minister, who will enjoy executive rights, through an adult franchise.

The PM should poll at least 51 per cent of the total valid votes cast during the election, UML secretary Yuvraj Gyawali, also the party spokesperson, said at the end of the meeting held at the party headquarters, Balkhu.

He said the President will act as a ceremonial head of the state and would remain a symbol of national unity.

The UML, the third largest force in the Constituent Assembly, has proposed a mixed election system (first-past-the-post and proportional representational system) for the federal parliament and provincial assemblies.

The mixed election system was followed during the Constituent Assembly election.

Gyawali said the party had already formed a seven-member talks team headed by party standing committee member Bharat Mohan Adhikari to hold talks with other parties in the Constituent Assembly.

The meeting also endorsed party president Khanal’s trip to India beginning November 3. Gyawali said Khanal would meet prominent Indian leaders to discuss bilateral relations between the two countries. It also decided to convene the party’s politburo meeting in mid-November.

He said the planned politburo meeting would resolve the differences, considering the parallel organisations formed by the Khanal and Oli factions in the Kathmandu district. He said next standing committee meeting that would take place before the politburo meet would resolve internal rift in the party.

Meanwhile, standing committee member KP Oli hosted a dinner for the UML leaders at his private residence in Balkot. Party president Khanal, PM Madhav Kumar Nepal, UML ministers and other leaders were present during the dinner.

The dinner has been dubbed as an initiative to patch up internal differences between Khanal and Oli, who have been locking horns over the party organisation and statute since the party held its eighth general convention in February. A group of UML youth leaders close to Khanal had also organised a tea-party at Hotel Soaltee on Wednesday in a bid to bury differences.

“The dinner has helped normalise relations among the top leaders. Party leaders have now realised that that the internal differences should be ironed out at ideological, organisational and political level,” said Rameshwor Phuyal, a UML central committee member and Kathmandu district secretary.