THT 10 YEARS AGO: Army can be mobilised for polls: Nepal, Sushil

Pokhara, September 10, 2007

General Secretary of the CPN-UML Madhav Kumar Nepal and Nepali Congress vice-president Sushil Koirala today said the army could be deployed during the constituent assembly polls if all the eight parties agree to it.

Addressing a press meet organised by Press Chautari-Kaski here, Nepal said: “If necessary, the army can be mobilised for the polls after an understanding between the eight political parties.”

Nepal also said that the remarks made by founder leader of the NC, Krishna Prasad Bhattarai on republic and monarchy are irrelevant at a time when the entire country is talking about a republican set-up. Also former prime minister, Bhattarai yesterday said the NC should not go for a republican set-up and that monarchy was a symbol of cultural, ethnic and political unity and it should be safeguarded.

Nepal said the people will defeat any party that argues in favour of the monarchy. At a time when the NC has also decided to take the republican course, it is difficult for the Maoists to talk of disrupting the polls, he further said. He said the list of his party’s candidates will be announced by the end of this month and added that 33 to 40 per cent of them would comp rise women.

Also today, addressing a press conference organised by the Reporters’ Club Nepal here, Sushil Koirala said the idea of deploying the army for the polls was nothing new. “What we want is that there shouldn’t even be a need for civil or armed police during the polls.

Unification bid facing opposition in NC-D

Kathmandu, September 10, 2007

The unification of the Nepali Congress (NC) and NC (D) appeared imminent on September 2 when the NC (D) endorsed the deal reached between its President Sher Bahadur Deuba and NC President Girija Prasad Koirala on August 29.

The fact that the deal was reached last week and that the same was agreeable to the NC (D) was formally publicised on September 2 by none other than NC (D) General Secretary Bimalendra Nidhi following a meeting. The development had indeed reinforced the probability that the two parties could come up with joint statement by today, which coincides with BP birth anniversary. But that did not happen as task forces could not even sit down for a serious meeting, with NC task force left down to one man.

Meanwhile, the fact that the unification did not happen today is being identified as part of a different strategy which resulted in NC (D) task force suggesting unification be announced after Mahasamiti meeting is called.

Although the proposal to this effect has been merely put across by the NC (D) task force apparently after consultation in the party, this is being construed as an indication of “someone or the other” in the NC (D) working against unification.