Nepal Today

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Political deadlock continues ahead of threatened Maoist strike

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 Nov: A six-month political deadlock continued Thursday as Maoists, Nepali Congress and CPN-UML failed to reach an agreement on a common parliamentary resolution to address Maoist demands for discussion in parliament.
There was no unanimity between the leaders of three parties on a common resolution parties agreed to draft Wednesday.
A summit of three party leaders couldn’t be held as a result.
Three parties have agreed to meet again to reach an agreement Friday the day Maoists threatened to launch anti-government protests to bring the country to a halt.
There was no agreement between three parties even after Chairman Prachanda flew to Singapore and held discussions with ailing Nepali Congress Girija Prasad Koirala at a hospital.
Despite denials by S.D. Muni the meeting was brokered by him.
Prachanda on the pretext of interacting with party activists in the city state spent his entire time holding discussions with Koirala and Muni who is a pointman for the government of India.
Following strained relations with India, Prachanda held discussions with the India government pointman in Singapore.
Muni reports regularly to New Delhi and acts on behalf of the Indian government which is concerned with the delayed peace process and the drafting of the constitution.
Meanwhile, central Maoist leaders following a meeting agreed not to cooperate in the passage of the annual budget until their demands are met to correct what they call a unconstitutional act of the president to retain sacked Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
Maoist leaders say a ceremonial president acted unconstitutionally against the spirit of the third popular movement after which all executive powers were vested in the prime minister.
But Maoists also didn’t follow procedure by directly appointing a replacement army chief while only informing the president earlier this year..
Ruling parties are attempting to form a parallel power center around th president after Maoists won the April 2008 constituent assembly elections.
The country is heading towards a political crisis after parties invited the UN to mediate in political matters while encouraging and tolerating intervention of foreign countries, including India, EI and USA.
New Delhi is a city of political pilgrimage for Nepali leaders; Singapore has emerged as a new center.
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