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Maoist’s hope hinges on NC  

Sunday, January 25th, 2015
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Om Astha Rai

On last Friday, just a day after the January 22 deadline expired, Constituent Assembly (CA) Chair Subhas Nembang vowed to take a ‘decisive step’.

Nembang’s hint was clear: he would initiate the voting process on the disputed issues of the new constitution in the next CA meeting scheduled for Sunday. He looked determined to do so as the UCPN (Maoist) and Madhesi parties constantly disrupted the CA meetings to stop the NC’s chief whip Chin Kaji Shrestha from proposing a questionnaire committee.

However, some UCPN (Maoist) lawmakers hoped that Nembang would not go to that extent and still leave a room for consensus. But, their hope was dashed when Nembang proposed Proposal Drafting Committee (PDC) amidst sloganeering by the opposition lawmakers on Sunday.

Ostensibly outraged by Nembang’s move, the UCPN (Maoist)-led alliance of 30 opposition parties declared that they would not sit in for talks with the ruling NC and the UML. On the other hand, there have been no efforts to hold talks with the opposition by the ruling parties, either.

As deadlock deepens with both the ruling and the opposition parties appearing unwilling to negotiate on the disputed issues, the future political course looks uncertain.

But, an analysis of the way Nembang proposed the PDC and the way the UCPN (Maoist) alliance reacted to it offers an insight into the future political course.

Even though Nembang overlooked sloganeering by the opposition lawmakers, he has given ten days for the PDC to draft a questionnaire on the disputed issues. It is something the UCPN (Maoist) Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal had earlier sought from the ruling parties. He first demanded 10 days and later compromised on five days for forging a consensus. So, the ruling parties might persuade the opposition into holding talks even as the PDC proceeds further.

But, will the UCPN (Maoist) agree to hold talks with the ruling parties without dismantling the PDC? It might, given the fact that the UCPN (Maoist)-led alliance has not warned of walking out of the CA. At a press meet on Sunday, the UCPN (Maoist) Chair Dahal said, “We are not walking away from the CA.”

A UCPN (Maoist) leader interpreted Dahal’s statement as ‘a hint that there will still be talks.” He said: “As long as our party stays in the CA, we will have talks.”

UCPN (Maoist) leaders say they hope a section of the NC leaders, if not the UML, might facilitate talks between the ruling and the opposition parties. “The UML appears unanimously dead against holding talks with us; but a section of NC leaders are not,” said Ram Karki, a UCPN (Maoist) leader. “Their role will be crucial to break the deepening deadlock.”

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One Response to “Maoist’s hope hinges on NC  ”

  1. namah on Says:

    Nembang: The ONLY and TRUE patriot in this nation. Salute to you sir! You are truly carrying on the traditions of the fearless Gurkha. May your tribe increase, and may other craven leaders learn from you

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