Dahal, Bhattarai in reconciliation bid

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Dahal, Bhattarai in reconciliation bid

May 18, 2014-

Though top UCPN (Maoist) leaders agreed to “manage” the unhealthy two-line struggle inside the party because of which it failed to draft a new constitution under its leadership, issues concerning appointment of party’s office bearers, allocation of major responsibilities for senior leaders and appointment of additional Central Committee(CC) members still remain contentious and cause for serious intra-party rift in the third largest party in the Constituent Assembly.

On Saturday, party Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Baburam Bhattarai had held a crucial meeting in which they agreed to resolve serious ideological differences between them to bring an end to the long-standing intra-party wrangling.

“However, there has not been any formal agreement in this regard till now and the top leaders will meet again on Monday to come up with a solution,” said Dahal’s aide Chudamani Khadka.  

As a gesture of goodwill, Dahal has agreed to initiate discussions regarding the seven-point political dossier he presented at the party’s national convention and which highlighted his serious ideological differences with the Bhattarai faction.

Due to the recurring dispute related to appointment of additional Central Committee members in the party, talks between Dahal and Bhattarai had failed to give a way out to serious intra-party rift the party started suffering from soon after the national convention. It must be noted that the national convention only worked to escalate tensions as Bhattarai and more than a dozen leaders close to him announced that they would not join the CC unless Dahal corrects his decision. Dahal proposed a 99-member CC but Bhattarai rejected it and walked out of the conclave, worsening the factional feud further.

Now Bhattarai has started to accuse Dahal of refusing to give any major responsibility to leaders close to him to “suppress opposing ideology”. Bhattarai has categorically proposed his supporters Top Bahadur Rayamajhi, Hishila Yami (who is also Bhattarai’s wife) and Devendra Poudel for top party posts, but Dahal rejected them outright without giving any valid reasons.

Bhattarai is also urging Dahal to step down as Parliamentary Party leader and entrust that responsibility to Krishna Bahadur Mahara. Bhattarai’s logic is that the party Chairman should not hold all vital positions. Likewise, nomination of 52 additional Central Committee members is another contentious issue. During the national convention, Bhattarai had also rejected a seat on the party’s central committee alleging that Dahal denied entry of his supporters in the party’s main body to suppress opposing ideology and views.

Meanwhile, the CC meeting has been postponed till Monday to address the demands of Bhattarai, but leaders say except the agreement to “manage” the two-line struggle there has not been any substantial progress in this regard.

Published: 19-05-2014 09:00

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