KATHMANDU, July 8: The Standing Committee meeting of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) has been postponed yet again. The meeting was scheduled for 11 am today.
According to Bishnu Rijal, the party’s Deputy Chief of the International Relations Department, the meeting will be held on Friday [July 10] at 11 am.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s press aide, Surya Thapa also shared that the meeting has been deferred by another two days.
With this, the ‘crucial’ Standing Committee meeting has been put off for three consecutive times in an apparent bid to provide enough time for the two chairmen of the party, KP Sharma Oli and Pushpa Kamal Dahal to reach consensus amid the heightened rift within the party.
During this time, the chairmen duo have held a series of talks to hammer out their differences which have surfaced at the peak in recent days. Oli is under intense pressure to step down from the posts of Prime Minister and party chairperson as a majority of the party’s Standing Committee members have asked him to do so owing to the government’s lackluster response to the COVID-19 pandemic and Oli’s unilateral actions, bypassing the party’s official and unofficial decisions.
They sat for talks for two hours on Friday last week, however, could not reach consensus. Prime Minister Oli has maintained that he is ready to hold talks on all issues except his resignation from the posts of prime minister and the party’s chairman.
They also held an hour-long meeting on Sunday afternoon. However, they could not reach a conclusion. They, however, agreed to sit again for talks to minimize their differences before the crucial Standing Committee meeting which was scheduled for Monday.
The two chairmen held a one-on-one meeting on Monday as well in an attempt to minimize their differences amid the intense intra-party rift in the party. According to sources, their meeting had ended on a ‘positive note’.
The row within the party reached at its peak after Prime Minister Oli on June 28 made an allegation that forces within Nepal and India were trying to oust him from power in an apparent bid to take revenge against his ‘bold decision’ to issue the country’s new political map that includes Kalapani, Lipu Lekh and Limpiyadhura occupied by India for decades.