gototopgototop

Alliance for Social Dialogue

:: Nepal in Transition Monthly Updates Separate State Restructuring Models of UCPN (M), Congress, and UML (April 22-28)
Saturday, 28 April 2012 09:05

Separate State Restructuring Models of UCPN (M), Congress, and UML (April 22-28)

UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) reached an agreement to establish a constitutional court for five years and provide citizenship to children of parents if either father or mother is a Nepali national. There was an agreement to a directly elected president and executive prime minister elected from the parliament, but was no agreement upon their jurisdiction. After UCPN (M), Congress, and UML proposed separate models for separate state restructuring, the distance between the parties grew more.

As the consultations among the parties were going on for a consensus, UCPN (M) proposed Limbuwan-Mechi, Kirant-Koshi, Tamsaling-Indrawati, Madhes-Birat, Newa-Bagmati, Tamuwan-Gandak, Magarat-Dhaulagiri, Karnali, Seti-Mahakali, and Tharuwan-Lumbini states. UCPN (M) stated that its new proposal was in response to the discussions in the Constituent Assembly (CA) and demands from various ethnic groups for identity-based federalisation. Congress and UML raised objections to the UCPN (M) proposal. Congress leader Ram Sharan Mahat accused UCPN (M) of making a mockery of federalism. UML leader KP Sharma Oli said that the UCPN (M) proposal would not be acceptable to his party. However, UDMF supported the proposal stating that the proposal would address the demands of various Janajatis and language communities.

The next day after the UCPN (M) proposal, Congress presented a seven-state model of state restructuring at a meeting of the parties. It proposed Koshi, Janakpur, Bagmati, Gandaki, Karnali, Khaptad, and Siddhartha states based on recognition and capability. Congress leader Ram Chandra Paudel claimed that his party’s proposal would make federalisation a success. However, UCPN (M) and UDMF objected to the proposal of Congress. UDMF leader Hridayesh Tripathi said the Congress proposal is against Madhesis.

The meeting of the central committee of UML while the discussions on state restructuring were going on gave the responsibility of bringing out a consensus model to its standing committee. Then UML proposed a 12-state model. The proposal based on identity, UCPN (M) stated that it was positive. As there was no consensus on the form of government and state restructuring, the parties extended time to seek consensus. However, there was no consensus on the form of government and state restructuring.

Major Developments


April 22

UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and UDMF hold discussions on the disputed issues of the constitution. Discussion on judicial system. The leaders state being close to establishing a constitutional court for five years.
Prime minister Baburam Bhattarai claims that there will be agreement soon among the parties on the disputed issues on constitution-drafting. Expresses confidence that the constitution will be complete in a few a days.
Various communist parties hold separate programmes on the occasion of establishment of the Communist Party in Nepal. UCPN (M) chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal stated party formation and fracturing was normal.
Meeting of the Constitutional Committee is postponed after a short meet. The leaders ask for additional time to settle disputed issues.
Various Janajati and indigenous organisations submit a memorandum to UCPN (M) chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal, demanding federalism based on ethnic identity and right to self-determination. Chairperson Dahal expresses commitment not to compromise on the issue of identity.
The government registers a bill for 12th amendment of the Interim Constitution.

April 23

UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and UDMF hold discussions on the disputed issues on constitution-drafting. Agreement on establishing a constitutional court for five years. Also agreement on a mixed election system.
Meeting of the Constitutional Committee and dispute resolution sub-committee. After requests for additional three days to resolve disputes, the meeting is adjourned until April 26.
UML senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal claims the constitution will address the aspirations of the people and will be promulgated within the stipulated time and suggests not prolonging the discussion as time was short.
6th Loktantra Day. There are no formal programmes either from the government or the parties.

April 24

UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and UDMF hold group and separate discussions on the disputed issues on constitution-drafting from 10 am to 5 pm. The leaders state they are close to agreement on a 325-member Lower House and 60-member Upper House. All party meeting in the evening. The smaller parties suggest the larger parties to work together and move forward.
UCPN (M) vice-chairperson Mohan Vaidya faction announces the formation of People’s Volunteer Bureau, coordinated by standing committee member Netra Bikram.

April 25

Kochila Struggle Committee holds a press conference and demands Kochila State comprising of Jhapa, Morang, and Sunsari.
Sanghiya Sadbhawana Party holds a press conference in the capital, demanding a constitution with federalism and three states of mountains, hills, and Tarai.
Meeting of UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, and UML. Discussion on the house of representatives after complaints of it being too big. Although agreement on mixed elections, parties still differ on the jurisdiction of the president and the prime minister.
Meeting of the Constitutional Committee extends the deadline by two days to seek consensus. Committee chairperson Nilambar Acharya states that the meeting ended with the decision that the dispute resolution sub-committee will submit its written report on April 28.
Meeting of Nepali Congress central committee and parliamentary party suggests emphasising parliamentary supremacy wile deciding for form of government.

April 26

Meeting of UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, and UML. UCPN (M) chairperson proposes a 10-state model of state restructuring. Congress and UML accuse UCPN (M) of backing down from past agreements.
The parliamentary meeting is postponed after there was no agreement on the disputed issues on constitution-drafting. The next meeting is scheduled for April 29.
Madhesi Janadhikar Forum-Nepal organises protests in Naya Baneshwor demanding constitution with federalism by May 27.
Nepali Congress president Sushil Koirala asks everyone to rest assured that the peace process will be completed and constitution promulgated within the stipulated time. He also states he will not compromise on the norms and values of democracy.

April 27

Meeting of UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and UDMF. Congress proposes a seven-state model. UDMF accuses the Congress model of being against Madhes. UCPN (M) chairperson Dahal states that if there is no consensus on the 10-states model, it will go back to its previous 14-state model.
UCPN (M) forms ex-People’s Liberation Army including former combatants. UCPN (M) chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal states that there will be no compromise on the provision of directly elected president in the constitution.
Meeting of UML central committee discusses the form of government and state restructuring. Assigns the responsibility of settling the issue of states to the standing committee. Suggests the leadership to work for directly elected prime minister and constitutional president.
Meeting of UDMF states the 10-state proposal of UCPN (M) is more practical and that their demand of ‘one Madhes, one state’ remains.
National Muslim United Struggle Committee protests in the Ratna Park and Ghantaghar demanding guarantee of their rights in the new constitution. Police intervene after vehicles are attacked upon.

April 28

UCPN (M), Nepali Congress, UML, and UDMF hold discussions on the disputed issues on constitution-drafting. UML proposes a 12-state model of state restructuring.
Dalit Nagarik Samaj, Karnali Autonomous Struggle Committee, and Sherpa community state sit-in in front of the CA building demanding guarantee of their rights in the new constitution.
CA vice-chairperson Purna Kumari Subedi stresses the guarantee of women’s rights in the new constitution.
Former People’s Liberation Army organises a press conferences in the capital, states it will give pressure to the parties on constitution-drafting.
A two-day conference of United Democratic Tharu Front demands a single Tarai Tharuhat with right to self-determination and preferential rights.