UDMF urges for settling issue of provincial delineation before preparing for local polls

Published On: August 25, 2016 12:10 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Aug 25: The United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF), the alliance of seven Madhes-based parties, has urged the government to prepare for the local elections only after finalizing the provincial boundaries as per its demands.

A meeting of top leaders of the UDMF on Wednesday developed a common stance that the process of holding local elections should be carried ahead only after settling the issue of provincial delineation.

"As per the spirit of federalism, local levels can be finalized only after finalizing provinces. Since we have been demanding to change the provincial boundaries to meet our demands, we urge the government to start the process of holding local elections only after settling the issue," said Manish Suman, general secretary of Sadbhavana Party.

Likewise, the UDMF meeting decided to form a three-member taskforce to coordinate with the government to provide financial support to the individuals who sustained injuries during the Madhes protest and to the families of those who died during the protests.

According to Suman, the task force includes Lal Babu Raut of Federal Socialist Forum Nepal, Ram Naresh Raya of Tarai Madhes Sadbhavana Party and Suman himself.

"Though the government has already decided to declare 52 individuals killed during the Madhes protests last year as martyrs, a significant number of individuals, who died during the movement, are yet to be declared as martyrs. The task force will coordinate with the government in all these issues, including reparation to victims' families," said Suman.

The UDMF also urged the government to give full shape to the judicial probe commission formed to investigate on excessive use of force by security forces and vandalism during the Madhes protests. The government last week had decided to form a seven-member commission under the chairmanship of former justice Girish Chandra Lal but had assigned the home ministry to appoint other members of the commission later.

The UDMF also urged the government to start discussion for constitution amendment at the earliest.

"The top leaders of all parties within the UDMF will soon meet Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal and discuss all the issues," said Suman.

The UDMF has been demanding change in provincial delineation, ensuring electoral constituencies on the basis of population and proportionate inclusion in all state agencies through constitution amendment.

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