NC lawmakers defy party’s stance on federalism,Chief whip hints at action

KATHMANDU, MAY 11 – Nepali Congress lawmakers representing ethnic, indigenous and minority communities have finally defied the party’s official stance of federalism without unitary ethnic identity.

On Wednesday, NC lawmakers Indra Bahadur Gurung and Jeep Tsering Lama handed over a memorandum signed by 18 lawmakers of the party to senior leaders at the Special Committee hall on the CA premises. The memorandum demanded that the party go for federalism based on unitary identity.

Apart from party President Sushil Koirala, Ram Chandra Poudel, Prakash Man Singh, Krishna Sitaula, Ram Sharan Mahat and Arjun Narsimha KC were present in the hall. The leaders, however, have not responded to the lawmakers’ move.

Among the lawmakers signing the memorandum are Sita Gurung, Lila Subba, Urmila Thapa, Umakanta Chaudhary, Man Bahadur Mahato, Jeep Tsering Lama and Indra Bahadur Gurung.

In continuation of their demand for federalism along ethnic lines, the lawmakers on Thursday reached a four-point agreement in alliance with members of other political parties maintaining a similar view. That the lawmakers would remain firm on their stance of unitary ethnic identity as the basis for federalism is the crux of the agreement. Indra Bahadur Gurung and Lama signed the agreement from the NC.

“If the parties fail to reach consensus on state restructuring, we will vote as per our preference,” said Indra Bahadur Gurung.

NC Chief Whip Laxman Ghimire maintained that it was quite irresponsible of the lawmakers to go against the party’s official stance.

“Any lawmaker, directly elected under the party’s banner or one nominated by the party, must accept the party’s official decision. Party decision is supreme and no one should go against it,” Ghimire said.

Asked if the party would take any action against the lawmakers, the chief whip hinted that it could be in accordance with the parliamentary party regulations.

Lama, however, claimed that their position would actually strengthen the party in terms of popular support so they were ready to face action.Ekantipur Report

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