Thursday, December 17, 2009

Nepali Maoists take autonomous states count to 12; declare Magarat and Tamuwan

As part of its ongoing drive to declare federal states despite facing widespread criticism, the Unified CPN (Maoist) declared Magarat and Tamuwan autonomous states on Thursday. With this, the number of Maoist-declared autonomous states has reached twelve.

Maoist general secretary Ram Bahadur Thapa 'Badal' declared the Magarat state from a mass meeting in Tansen, the district headquarters of Palpa, this afternoon. The announcement was made amid the cacophony of firecrackers and sloganeering.

The Magarat state comprises Palpa, Rolpa, Rukum, Baglung, Myagdi, Arghakhanchi, Pyuthan, Gulmi and Salyan.

Similarly, Maoist central committee member Dev Gurung declared the Tamuwan autonomous state amid a programme organized in Pokhara of Kaski district.

The Tamuwan state comprises Lamjung, Gorkha, Tanahun, Manang, Mustang, Kaski, Parvat and Syangja.

Speaking on the occassion, Gurung said that the Maoists were compelled to declare autonomous states to exert pressure on the government to be serious towards timely drafting of the constitution.

He also claimed that the autonomous state declaration programme of the party was not against the interim constitution or the ongoing peace process.

Meanwhile, student unions affiliated to various political parties including ruling CPN (UML), Nepali Congress (NC) and Madhesi Janadhikar Forum - Loktantrik (MJF-L) shut all education institutions in Kaski district today protesting the Maoist plan to declare Tamuwan autonomous federal state.

Schools and colleges in the district remained closed today to the strike. The Maoists had declared Newa and Tamsaling states on Wednesday. The Maoists are set to declare Madhesh state on Friday.

Defying calls from several quarters to withdraw the autonomous state declaration programme, the Maoists went ahead with its plan to declare 13 autonomous states based on ethnicity and region from Dec 11

Source : Nepal News

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