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Nepal government proposes CA extension

The Nepal government tabled a motion to amend the interim constitution and extend the term of the Constituent Assembly by one more year on Thursday. The CA's term expires on May 28.

Immediately after returning from a conference of Least Developed Countries in Istanbul, Prime Minister Jhalanath Khanal convened a meeting of all parties to discuss the political situation. While the opposition boycotted the meeting, major ruling parties — Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist), Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), and Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum (Nepal) — agreed to support term extension.

Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda' told reporters, “All leaders were of the view that extension of CA was essential but government should be able to justify the extension and come up with a clear roadmap to bring peace and constitution drafting process to a logical end.”

The Nepali Congress (NC) has said it will support CA extension only if three conditions are met — agreement on numbers and modality of integration of former Maoist combatants and their regrouping so that the peace process reaches an ‘irreversible' position; agreement on draft democratic constitution; and the abrogation of the seven-point agreement between Mr. Khanal and Mr. Prachanda and resignation of the present government.

The United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF), comprising three Tarai based parties, have also opposed extension . NC and UDMF sources told The Hindu that their aim was to use this moment to pressure the Maoists to move on the peace process and alter power sharing arrangement.

The CA's term was extended after last minute negotiations on May 28 last year. The Maoists, who were in opposition then, had supported term extension after extracting a commitment that then PM Madhav Kumar Nepal would resign.

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Printable version | May 9, 2021 3:22:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/nepal-government-proposes-ca-extension/article2013171.ece

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