Monday, June 30, 2008

Prachanda blames Terai parties for delay in govt formation

Chairman Prachanda' on Monday blamed the Terai-based parties of delaying the formation of a new government by obstructing the Constituent Assembly (CA) proceedings.

"The [announcement of] resignation by Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala immediately paved way for the formation of a new government, however the process has again been delayed by the obstruction created by the Tarai-based parties," chairman Dahal said speaking to a group of South Korean journalists that reached his residence at Nayabazaar to interview him Monday morning.

Just as it appeared that the deck for a formation of a new Maoist led government had been cleared by Koirala's resignation, the Terai-based parties have obstructed the proceedings of the Constituent Assembly (CA) for a straight three days demanding that the constitution amendment bill tabled in the CA address the issues raised by them.

Chairman Prachanda also informed that political parties are currently engaged in homework to form the new government in a week's time.

The Maoist Chairman also said that immediately after forming a new government under its leadership his party would pursue big projects and come up with attractive programs so that the people would immediately start to "feel the transformation" that has arrived in the country.

In a question about the army-integration, Prachanda said that there are plans to cut down the size of both the Maoist People's Liberation Army and Nepal Army which he referred to as a national army.

"There is no need to have more than 50,000 soldiers in the national army," he said, and suggested that the those who are laid off can be put into development works.

The Maoist chairman, who is to head the first democratically elected Maoist government in the world, appears to be a bit cross with the Terai-based parties over the obstruction created by them in the proceedings of the CA.

Although he has said that he supports the Terai parties demand for an autonomous Madhesh state, as per the agreement between the government and United Democratic Madheshi Front, an alliance of major Terai parties like Madheshi Janadhikar Forum, Terai Madhesh Loktantric Party and Sadbhawana Partry, he has publicly expressed his objection to the demand raised by them for declaring the whole of Terai (from Mechi to Mahakali) as a single Madhesh province.

Top Madheshi leaders including MJF's Upendra Yadav and Jay Prakash Prasad Gupta have threatened of a nationwide stir if the government turned down their demand for a single Madhesh province.

However, the indigenous Tharus, who consider themselves Terai's original"son of the soil", have raised objection against the demands of Terai parties for a single province in the Terai belt.

Tharu Welfare Assembly said that the "One Madhesh" demand have been made to convert their land - Tharuhat - into Madhesh and have warned that they might even resort to arm struggle if anybody downplayed their identity and existence.

Chure Bhawar Ekata Party (CBEP) which represents the people of hilly origin in Terai, has also raised objections against the demands for one Madhesh province, saying that it would sow the seed of 'national disintegration'

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