KATHMANDU, July 16: The top three leaders of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) are holding ‘decisive talks’ at the Prime Minister K P Oli’s official residence in Baluwatar to resolve their differences within the party, which, according to some analysts, has reached the verge of a split.
NCP Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal have reached Baluwatar to hold talks with Prime Minister Oli, who also holds the portfolio of the party’s chairman, to settle the intra-party disputes through a new power-sharing deal. Party insiders said the leaders have agreed to settle the intra-party disputes after Prime Minister Oli expressed readiness to make a fresh power-sharing deal with factions led by Dahal and Nepal.
Although Oli and Dahal held several rounds of ‘one on one’ talks to settle the intra-party dispute, this is the first time senior leader Nepal was also invited to the meeting. During his meeting with Prime Minister Oli on Wednesday, Chairman Dahal had proposed sitting together with senior leader Nepal to agree on a new power-sharing deal and save the party from a split.
During Wednesday’s meeting, Chairman Dahal made a nine-point proposal to settle the internal disputes seen in the NCP. He asked Prime Minister Oli to agree to abide by the party’s decision, implement the agreement reached during the party’s unification and honor the agreement made earlier to elect senior Bam Dev Gautam as a member of the federal parliament.
Dahal has also asked Prime Minister Oli not to bypass senior leader Nepal while taking crucial decisions of the party, reach a new agreement on contentious issues among three top leaders including Nepal and reshuffle the cabinet to ensure representation of leaders from all three factions within the party. Party insiders said the meeting of the top three leaders was held after Prime Minister Oli agreed to hold a detailed discussion to address the concerns of Nepal and Dahal.
A top NCP leader said senior leaders Jhala Nath Khanal and Bam Dev Gautam will also be invited to the meeting if the three leaders reach a concrete agreement to permanently resolve the intra-party differences.
Earlier last month, the party had been pushed to the verge of a split as the Dahal faction which commands a majority in all party bodies, sought the resignation of Prime Minister Oli from both the posts of prime minister and the party’s chairman. Prime Minister Oli then decided to prorogue the budget session of parliament and announced to split the party if he was forced to resign from any of the posts.
The failure of the three top leaders to reach any consensus has caused deferral of the party’s Standing Committee meeting time and again. A Standing Committee meeting scheduled for Friday is also likely to be deferred again if there was no agreement between Prime Minister Oli and Chairman Dahal and senior leader Nepal.