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New Protests to Begin in Nepal
People are fed up with inaction of interim government
Rupesh Silwal (rooproop)     Print Article 
Published 2006-07-24 10:07 (KST)   
The Civil Movement for Democracy and Peace (CMDP) in Nepal has announced that it will hold a series of protests beginning July 26 to address the delay in holding elections for the Constitutional Assembly. It has accused the government of failing to include Maoists in major decisions and making an issue out of weapons management.

The government has decided to hold the elections within eight months and is asking the Maoists to permanently hand over its weapons before it joins the government. The Maoists have refused. A U.N. team is visiting Nepal for the same reason.

The Maoists are calling for the present parliament to be dissolved for not having an inclusive mandate.

The CMDP is looked upon with importance because it played a major role in the recent protest movements and includes experienced bureaucrats, academicians, entrepreneurs, and past ministers among its ranks.

These days, public sentiment doesn't seem to be in favor of the government. Parliament has made popular decisions but failed to bring them into action. The government is concentrating on accumulating power whereas its prime concern should be the elections for the Constitutional Assembly.

"This government is back to the pre-movement era when they fought each other for posts. They have forgotten the mandate of the nineteen days people's movement. I am very unhappy for having two deputy prime ministers," said Lokesh Dhakal, a graduate student at Tribhuwan University. "Why won't political leaders sacrifice the post for the people's welfare?"

The appointment of two deputy prime ministers was a political balancing agreement adopted by the Seven Party Alliance.

"Parliament has declared Nepal is without discrimination... The ground realities show discrimination everywhere. Let them put words into action. The present parliament can never speak in favor of Dalits as there are no Dalit representatives [in Parliament]," said Suman Pariyar, who is a Dalit and a graduate student at Tribhuwan University. Dalits make up one fourth of Nepal's population.

"Nepal is drafting an interim constitution but there are no Dalits on the committee. The interim constitution backs up the Constitutional Assembly. How can we rely on it?

"We support the movement that is going to start from the 26th of July. Political parties and the parliament are inseparable in a parliamentary democracy but we want a new formation and newer strategies by totally new people in parliament. There is no difference between the present parliament or government and the governments... [of the] last 15 years," Pariyar said.

The Nepali people have grown to be politically mature and all the political decisions made by the parliament are analyzed by the public. A political decision made by the parliament might be popular but it doesn't necessarily have the gravity of the people's vote.

Nepalese are fed up with political instability and seek a quick solution to the present political instability. Everyone in Nepal now knows what they want. This political maneuvering by the present government, which is what all past governments did, is unbearable to them.
©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Rupesh Silwal

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