Major parties agree for FSU polls on set date

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Feb 16, 2017-

Top leaders of major political parties—the Nepali Congress, CPN (Maoist Centre) and CPN-UML—agreed on Wednesday to hold Free Student Union (FSU) elections in the Tribhuvan University-affiliate colleges at the announced date. 

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal had called a meeting to decide the fate of FSU elections as a section of NC-affiliated Nepal Students Union and All Nepal National Independent Student Union (Revolutionary), affiliated to the Netra Bikram Chand-led CPN Maoist, have padlocked various colleges putting forth various demands. 

While some leaders from NSU have been demanding to scrap the 28-year age limit for contesting in the polls, the Chand Maoist student wing has demanded postponement of elections, citing party’s general convention. 

The eighth general convention of the CPN Maoist is underway in Thawang of Rolpa district. 

The election process was to start from February 12 with the publication of voters’ list and the nominations forms were set to be distributed from February 15, but obstructions created by student union protests have partially disrupted the process. Officials from the TU, leaders of the student unions and student in-charges of the respective parties were also present in the meeting.

At the three-party meeting, NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba had proposed to postpone the elections by a week if the polls can get larger acceptance. But UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli rejected the proposal. “All the leaders agreed not to postpone the elections after strong reservation from Oli,” said Sudha Tripathi, rector at TU, who is also the coordinator of the election process. 

An unidentified group on Sunday had set Tripathi’s vehicle ablaze. She is also learnt to have received threats to postpone the polls. 

On Tuesday, campus chiefs of various TU constituent colleges from the Kathmandu Valley in their meeting with TU officials had said that it would be difficult to hold the polls in the present circumstances.

According to Narendra Neupane, chairman of the Maoist Centre-affiliated 

All Nepal National Independent Student Union (Revolutionary), PM Dahal in the meeting said that he was committed to FSU polls and directed all concerned authorities to conduct the polls.

Following the meeting with the major parties, TU officials held a meeting with Home Minister Bimalendra Nidhi and other officials seeking security to hold the polls. 

Published: 16-02-2017 08:32

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