Consensus eludes at big-three meeting on constitution amendment




Kathmandu : The three main political parties have failed to forge consensus on the constitution amendment proposal prepared by the government in line with the demands of the agitating United Democratic Madhesi Front.
The main opposition CPN-UML objected to the proposal, saying the constitution was being amended against national interest. The meeting called by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal in a bid to strike a deal on the constitution amendment was attended by the main leaders of the chief political parties- Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and the CPN (Maoist-Centre).
Following the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bimalendra Nidh said although the discussions were held very positively with UML regarding the constitution amendment, the Monday meeting saw objection from the UML.
The meeting discussed the contents as naturalized citizenship, representation in the national assembly, demarcation of province, language commission. “Now the amendment proposal would be forwarded after holding discussion with the UDMF, added DPM Nidhi.
Meanwhile, UML Vice-Chairman, Bhim Bahadur Rawal, said no article has discriminated against anyone, so there was no point in amending the constitution. “Why is it a haste to amend constitution without implementing it, and holding election,” he wondered
He further argued that the amendment proposal was against national interest, so there was no option but to protest.
“We’re shocked over the sudden change in the views of the CPN-UML though it was positive on constitution amendment. Amendment of the constitution is essential to ensure its broader acceptability, and holding elections,” said Maoist leader Barsha Man Pun, adding, “It has shown UML’s arrogance.”
The meeting was attended by PM Dahal, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara, leaders Narayan Kajji Shrestha, Ram Bahadur Thapa, and Barshaman Pun, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba, DPM Nidhi, Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport, Ramesh Lekhak, UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli, Vice-Chairmen Bamdev Gautam and Rawal, senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal, and Subash Nembang.