Print Edition - 2017-02-03 | News
Morcha: Govt free to prepare for polls
Feb 3, 2017- The Madhes-based parties have said the government was free to make internal preparations for the local elections but stressed that the row over constitution amendment should be resolved and local boundaries redrawn before announcing the dates.
The remarks of the agitating parties come hours after the government decided to write to the Election Commission to make preparations for the local elections without mentioning the dates.
“We have been told that the election date would be announced with our consent after ending the stalemate over constitution amendment. The government, however, is free to make internal preparations for the planned polls,” said Tarai Madhes Loktantrik Party General Secretary Sarbendra Nath Shukla.
Shukla reiterated the stance of the Samyukta Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha, an alliance of seven Madhes-based parties, that the regional forces would not take part in the vote if their concerns were not addressed.
Morcha interlocutors said they are in discussion with senior government officials about finding a breakthrough on disputed issues before announcing the date.
Sources privy to negotiations told the Post that Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal still appears committed to announcing the election date after endorsing the constitution amendment bill.
But NC leaders including party President Sher Bahadur Deuba have proposed announcing the dates without further delay. Deuba also said the bill would be endorsed a month after the announcement of the dates.
“They gave us written commitment to amending the constitution soon after the formation of the government. We waited for six months in vain. We are fed up with their promises,” said Shukla.
Sadbhawana Party Chairman Rajendra Mahato said the NC and the CPN (Maoist Centre) should come up with a common position on constitution amendment and elections.
“The ruling parties themselves are at odds over the constitution amendment proposal. They should first make a common position before reaching out to other parties for support,” said Mahato. The Maoist Centre and the NC have proposed formal talks with Morcha leaders later this week.
Besides seeking amendment to the constitution, the Morcha has also expressed concerns over the boundaries of local units.
Published: 03-02-2017 08:24