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Govt formally invites UDMF for talks

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KATHMANDU —The government on Sunday made a new call to the unsettling United Democratic Madhesi Morcha (UDMF) to come back to the dialogue table, after almost a break in about three months.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kamal Thapa, who heads the government talks team, wrote a formal letter to the UDMF, inviting its constituents for talks.

The date for a meeting, however, would be decided in consultation with the interlocutors of the participating parties.

Thapa also wrote in the letter that the government had already formed a political mechanism to address the question of provincial boundaries.

Stating that the government was committed to addressing the Madhes demands on the basis of dialogue and consensus, he said the first two amendments to the constitution were also made as per the understanding reached during the talks.

The government and the Madhes-based parties have not held talks since February 18, the day the Thapa-led political mechanism was formed. The committee is yet to take shape after the Madhesi parties and the Nepali Congress, the largest party in Parliament, refused to send their representatives to it.

Thapa additionally urged the Madhesi parties to send their representatives to the panel tasked with working out the details for redrawing the boundaries of the provinces.

The Madhes based parties, however, are in no mood to readily accept the call for dialogue. They charge that the government is not serious about resolving the crisis.

Madhesi leaders said that they were not hopeful about a positive outcome of the talks due to the ‘rigid’ stance taken by the government on crucial issues including the revision to federal boundaries, their main demand.

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PM congratulates Nepali national cricket team

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KATHMANDU— Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has congratulated Nepali national cricket team for being able to clinch the International T20 series.

PM Oli in a tweet extended best wishes and congratulations saying he was very happy to know Nepal’s win over the UAE by 14 runs in the third match of the series.

Winning T20 series is another landmark success for Nepali cricket, he said, adding, “It is big achievement for Nepal’s cricket. I would like to heartily congratulate entire members of Nepali cricket squad”.

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