Dissolution of the CA is almost inevitable unless there is a miracle

KATHMANDU: With talks among the four major political forces failing to cut ice a day before the Constituent Assembly’s term expires, dissolution of the CA is almost inevitable unless there is a miracle tomorrow.

In a bid to forge consensus, a second round of talks was held from 9:00 to 11:00 pm but the parties failed again to agree. UML negotiator KP Oli said they failed to reach understanding because the Maoists and United Democratic Madhesi Front stuck to their stances. “They asked us if we had anything new, and we replied in the negative,” Oli told mediapersons.

Earlier, leaders of major parties said, “Only through a miracle will it be possible to promulgate the new constitution by tomorrow night. Otherwise, it is almost certain that the country will plunge into constitutional vacuum, anarchy and uncertainty.”

Talks among the four major political forces — the Unified CPN-Maoist, CPN-UML, Nepali Congress and UDMF — failed to bridge differences on the identity of federal units although the parties had already reached consensus on almost all other issues of the new constitution.

UCPN-M and UDMF leaders said fresh CA elections could be the next legitimate step.

NC and UML leaders, however, said it was a Maoist ploy to announce state of emergency to capture state power. “The Maoists and UDMF want to hold fresh elections and misuse state power to secure majority. However, we will never let it happen,” NC leader Ram Sharan Mahat said. “If the Maoists and UDMF come up honestly by tomorrow, promulgating the new statute will still be possible.”

Maoist leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha held the NC and UML responsible for the failed talks. “Neither do the NC and UML want consensus on federalism, nor to put unsettled issues to the vote in the CA,” Shrestha said.

UDMF leader Raj Kishor Yadav said identity based federalism was non-negotiable for them.

“We cannot surrender in the name of consensus,” added Yadav.

Crocodile tears

KATHMANDU: The Maoists appeared indifferent to the prospects of the CA being dissolved while the negotiations were on. However, just as they emerged from the meeting, DPM Narayan Kaji Shrestha shed tears as he briefed mediapersons. “I regret to inform that the talks have failed. I do not see any hope of a breakthrough,” he said. “The CA is going to die. Two-third members of the CA favour ethnic identity based federalism. Yet, the NC and UML rejected the idea of putting the issue to vote,” Shrestha said. He ruled out emergency.

UCPN-M and UDMF stances

• multiple identity based federalism

• 6 to 8 pradeshes model proposed by NC, UML

• 11-pradesh model proposed by the Maoists themselves

• model specifying 6 to14 pradeshes now and deciding other disputes through a federal commission later

• giving identity of at least two ethnic groups to each federal unit.

NC, UML stances

• multiple identity based federalism

• 6 to 8 pradeshes model proposed by NC, UML

• 11-pradesh model proposed by the Maoists themselves

• model specifying 6 to14 pradeshes now and deciding other disputes through a federal commission later

• giving identity of at least two ethnic groups to each federal unit.source THT

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