Nepali Times Asian Paints
From The Nepali Press
Takes two to talk



Can your demands-an interim government, a new constituent assembly and an institutionalised republic-be achieved through dialogue?
Many people doubt whether our aims can be reached through dialogue. Some say that this change requires a force beyond the scope of the government. But we feel that the government is the main player in the present political process, under the present constitution. Before any dialogue the government calls for a meeting of all parties and tries to put forward to us the conclusions reached there. Its responsibility is to gather all these forces and come to some understanding. It must have the will to bring the issues on which all agree to the table . I feel it is possible (to get what we want through dialogue).


Each of your demands are related to the other. They have not been presented as independent demands...
They are definitely interdependent. Our main demand is the establishment of an institutionalised republic. For this to happen, the present constitution must be scrapped and a new constitution be put in its place. The people must have the right to decide this. An interim government must be formed in order to formulate a new constitution. The new constitution is needed to establish a republic. So all demands are related.


What do you mean by an institutionalised republic?
A republic has already been formed, informally, in this country. The 1 June incident has proved that the monarchy is totally irrelevant in today's context. It was something that was there in the past, today people want a republic. Therefore, to fulfil their aspirations, we have to work for a new constitution. The new constitution must help in institutionalising the republic.


If the constituent assembly makes a decision unfavourable to you, what will you do?
We cannot give a definite answer now.

Two rounds of talks are already over, what is your opinion about talking?
We still want to resolve the problem through dialogue. The government does not change its behaviour, which means it should stop arresting our cadre, enforcing curfews, etc. None of that will help the dialogue, it will only hinder the process. If they do that, we will also have to rethink our position on dialogue.


LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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