Dispute rearing its ugly head in NC

KATHMANDU: Country’s grand old party, the Nepali Congress, seemed to have settled all its internal disputes two months ago after party President Sushil Koirala and senior leader Sher Bahadur Deuba buried the hatchet.

But did they?

What is surfacing again shows something was still brewing behind the facade of the agreement reached between the two factions.

A meeting of the faction led by senior leader Deuba today took serious exception to recent appointments of heads of party’s departments and zonal coordination committees.

Leaders present at today’s meeting even warned of resigning en masse from the department and zonal coordination committee posts. Such a move could give a terrible headache to party President Sushil Koirala who has been scrambling to put the house in order since he was elected the party chief some two years ago.

“Concluding that party President Koirala formed 42 departments and 14 zonal coordination committees by going against the party statute and culture of consensus, we have decided to resign en masse,” said CWC member Purna Bahadur Khadka, who is close to Deuba. Khadka, however, stopped short of telling when the resignations would come. “Our meeting tomorrow will decide about it,” added Khadka.

Party’s CWC meeting is scheduled to begin on Thursday.

More than 25 CWC members from the Deuba faction were appointed heads of departments and zonal coordination committees last month.

NC Spokesman Dilendra Prasad Badu, who belongs to the Koirala faction, however, refuted the allegations. “The appointments were made as per the party statute and procedures as prescribed by party regulations. Out of 42 departments, 12 are new and are not provisioned in the party statute and it’s just a proposal. The upcoming CWC meeting can either approve or reject it,” said Badu. He also accused the Deuba faction of promoting factionalism.

“The party president included all sides while making the appointments,” he added. “Yes there was no agreement reached with the Deuba group for such a move would have sent out a message that decisions were being taken after reaching a deal between two groups, which in turn could have promoted factionalism.”

Badu hoped that the party president would settle the issues after holding consultations with the Deuba faction.

Today’s gathering of the Deuba faction has also decided to press for calling a meeting of party’s mahasamiti — the second powerful body of the party.

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