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Rift in Nepali Congress

Monday, February 1st, 2010
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A High Level Political Mechanism meeting, scheduled to discuss the functioning of the current government, ended inconclusively on Monday. A few interesting details emerged afterwards, as leaders of various parties spoke to the press. From The Himalayan Times:

Nepali Congress has expressed its willingness to lead a new government during Monday’s High Level Political Mechanism (HLPM) meeting, provided the other two largest parties, UCPN-Maoist and the CPN UML, agree to the proposition.

Emerging from the HLPM meet, NC spokesperson Arjun Narsingh KC confirmed the party’s willingness for the job. He however set consent from the UCPN-Maoist and the UML as a precondition for it to happen.

This just hours after Kantipur reported that Nepali Congress was also going to seek clarification from Sujata Koirala for remarking that the current government should be changed. From Kantipur:

“If she was dissatisfied with the government or the prime minister, she should resign from the post or take the issue with the party,” NC general secretary, Bimalendra Nidhi, said. “Our agenda is constitution building, not government change.”

Soon after the HLPM meeting ended on Monday, Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal called a meeting of his own with ten other coalition parties. The Himalayan Times says it was “a hasty reaction hinting at rising speculation about a change of guard in the government.”

Since the HLPM meeting ended indecisively, the Maoists have said they will start a new round of protests soon. From Nepalnews:

Maoist vice chairman Narayan Kaji Shrestha said his party would unveil new phase of protest programs that would exert pressure for writing constitution on time. He added that his party was hopeful that the mechanism would address the demand for correcting president’s move.

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