Kathmandu: Bringing the differences in the
Maoist leadership to the fore, party chief Prachanda has
claimed that India favours his second-in-command Baburam
Bhattarai for Nepal`s prime ministership, prompting the latter
to hit back at him.
Prachanda said in a programme in Kathmandu last week that
India wants to make Bhattarai the Prime Minister of Nepal and
has been "putting pressure" in this regard.
Bhattarai has slammed the party supremo`s statement.
"It is an attempt to assassinate my character," Bhattarai
told reporters after the party`s central committee meeting
yesterday. The Maoist number two leader also lodged a strong
protest against Prachanda`s remarks during the meeting, the
Republica daily reported quoting party sources.
"Why don`t you tell others when some Indian leaders have
also proposed your (Prachanda`s) name as the next Prime
Minister candidate," Bhattarai is reported to have said.
Meanwhile, Maoist spokesman Dinanath Sharma has alleged
that India was trying to create a division within the party by
backing one against the other.
"It is a game plan of India to play one leader against
the other," Sharma said.