Saturday, June 28, 2008

SPA meeting over Terai parties' demands inconclusive

The seven-party alliance (SPA) meeting held in Baluwatar ended inconclusively as the allies could not form a common position on the demands of Terai-based parties, ahead of a meeting of the Constituent Assembly (CA), on Saturday.

According to UML leader Bhim Rawal who was present at the meeting, parties reiterated their reservation towards the Terai parties' demands, which include guarantee of 'autonomous Terai state' and 'collective entry' of people from Madhesi community into the Nepal Army.

"First of all seven parties need to arrive at a conclusion on these issues and then discuss with the Terai parties," Rawal said after the meeting.

Earlier, leaders of major parties - CPN (Maoist), Nepali Congress and UML - had said they were against the demand of the Terai parties.

If the parties had arrived at consensus, a cabinet meeting would take place to make changes in the constitution amendment bill brought before the CA by the government, incorporating the issues raised by Terai parties.

Meanwhile, the CA meeting which was to take place at 11:00 am has been rescheduled for the evening. Sources say the SPA leaders have agreed informally to defer the meeting till 4:00 pm.

Terai parties had obstructed the proceedings of the CA on Thursday, gheraoing the rostrum demanding that the agreement reached in the past be incorporated in the interim constitution.

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