Relations sour between ruling and Madhes-based parties

Published On: January 13, 2017 04:22 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Jan 13: Even as the ruling coalition succeeded in tabling the constitution amendment bill as per the demand of the agitating parties, the relation between the ruling and the Madhesh-based parties has lately grown complicated. 

While the ruling parties are doubtful whether the Madhes-based parties will take part in the election after the parliament settles the amendment bill, the Madhes-based parties are suspicious if the ruling parties are committed to endorsing the bill in the parliament. 

“Our relation has grown complicated. We are doubtful of the intention of the Madhes-based parties. They also seem to have some suspicions toward us regarding whether we are committed enough to endorse the amendment bill,” said a senior ruling party leader, asking not to be named. 

Ruling parties have grown skeptic as the agitating Madhes-based have demanded further revision in the amendment bill tabled already in the parliament. They are apprehensive that the demand of revision in the amendment bill now could be a ploy to shy away from election. 

“We have struggled so much already to bring this amendment bill. As the revision of the amendment bill as per the demand of Madhesh-based parties appears less likely for now, we have grown apprehensive of the intentions of the Madhes-based parties,” the leader further said. 

Leaders of the ruling parties maintained that the amendment bill was introduced amid protests from the opposition parties in an understanding that Madhesh-based parties will participate in the election no matter what decision parliament takes about it. Madhesh-based parties have not only demanded revision in the amendment bill, but also warned publicly that they would not take part in the election unless the amendment bill is endorsed.

The agitating parties are holding a meeting with the ruling parties on Friday to discuss further about their demands, according to General Secretary of National Madhes Socialist Party Keshav Jha. 

Jha said they will seek government's strategy and assurance to endorse the amendment bill with revision during the meeting. “We will also ask how the government is preparing to constitute the proposed federal delineation commission. We want this amendment bill to be revised further,” he added.

Madhes-based parties have demanded that chiefs of local units be removed from the electoral colleges for electing national assembly members, the recommendations of the commission formed to delineate local units under federal set up be revised, and local election be held under party-less system.

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