Thursday, June 12, 2008

NC, Maoists close to reaching agreement on govt formation

A day after dethroned monarch Gyanendra Shah left Narayanhiti palace abiding by the government's orders, the political climate in the country seems to be getting back to normal.

Reports just coming in say that Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and CPN (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal (Prachanda) are close to reaching a tentative agreement on letting a new government take shape in two days time, ending a protracted dispute that has long held Maoists take the reigns of the government.

During the meeting that is still going on between the top leaders of Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoists) at the Prime Minister's official residence in Baluwatar since early today morning, there was also discussion on the issues the three party task force had not been able finalize, it is learnt.

Army integration, restructuring of constitutional and security council, and the issue of power sharing is also being discussed during the talks, reports said. However, more details of the crucial meeting are yet to arrive.

This one-to-one meeting between PM Koirala and Chairman Prachanda had been long due as the two leaders fell back on the issue of power sharing and whom to appoint as the first President of a republican Nepal. While the Maoists have given up their claim for the president and are happy to just lead the new government with their party Chairman Prachanda taking up the responsibility of prime minister, Nepali Congress (NC) has proposed their party president PM Koirala for the post of the President, against Maoists wish of seeing a 'national figure' or a person from non-political civil society background to assume the responsibility of Head of State.

Regulars like Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula and senior Maoist leader Dr Baburam Bhattarai including other senior leaders from both the parties are said to be present in the meeting.

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