Nepalese President holds crucial talks amid deepening crisis

Last Updated: Sunday, April 4, 2010 - 23:52

Kathmandu: President Ram Baran Yadav held
crucial meetings with Nepal`s top leaders Sunday amid
speculation that the political crisis had deepened after
lawmakers from a key party supporting the government sought a
change in the leadership of the CPN-UML led coalition.

President Yadav intensified consultation with the top
leaders, including Maoist supremo Prachanda, CPN-UML chairman
Jhalanath Khanal and Nepali Congress acting president Shushil
Koirala, regarding the stalled peace process and the delay in
the drafting of the new constitution.

Yadav earlier met with Prime Minister Madhav Kumar
Nepal to discuss the political developments in the country.

President Yadav earlier expressed concern over delay
in the drafting of the constitution and concluding the peace
process due to widening differences among the parties.

Yadav is learnt to have advised the prime minister to create
environment for timely promulgation of the constitution.

The political leaders are struggling to meet a May
28 deadline to finish the drafting of the constitution as
stipulated by the peace process. Disagreements persist on such
fundamental issues as the structure of the national government
and the creation of federal states.

Some lawmakers from the Nepali Congress, a key ally of
the CPN-UML in the government, today pushed for a change of
guard in the government, the Himalayan Times online said
today.

During the Parliamentary Party meet of the Nepali
Congress today, they described the CPN UML-led government a
"failure", the report said. The lawmakers argued that
continuing the support to the government would undermine the
credibility of the party.

Several lawmakers also raised concerns over the dismal
performance of ministers representing the party in the
coalition.

Nepal`s parliament began its winter session today amid
deadlock among the political parties over the Maoists` demand
for the integration of its former guerrillas who are housed in
different UNMIN-supervised camps.

Political tensions have been high in Nepal since a
government led by the Maoists resigned earlier last year amid
a dispute with the President over the reinstatement of former
army chief Rukmangad Katawal, who was dismissed by the
Prachanda-led government last May. The Maoists want the
government disbanded, followed by the formation of a new
coalition government led by them.

Analysts fear that the death former Nepalese leader
Girija Prasad Koirala, who was instrumental in bringing the
Maoists to mainstream politics after a decade-long insurgency
in 2006, could derail the faltering peace process.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, April 4, 2010 - 23:52

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