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NC disrupts house demanding probe into leaking budget

Gorkha Post

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KATHMANDU — The main opposition party Nepali Congress on Monday obstructed four sequential meetings of the Legislature Parliament, demanding probe into leaking facts and figures of budget to media before the fiscal budget was presented in the House .

The main opposition party has also demanded Finance Minister Bishnu Poudel’s resignation on good grounds as information about the size of the budget and its priorities was disseminated a day before the budget was presented to Parliament.

The government on Saturday presented a Rs1048.92 billion budget, surpassing the Rs 909 billion ceiling set by the National Planning Commission.

Efforts of Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar to forge consensus between the ruling parties and the main opposition party fizzled, as the CPN-UML declined any probe into the holes.

When the Speaker started the meeting, the NC leaders demanded special time to speak. After the Speaker provided time to NC leader and former finance minister Ram Sharan Mahat to speak, he showed the newspaper that published the facts and figures of the budget before it was presented in the Parliament.

Mahat said that the budget broke the ceiling set by the National Planning Commission. This would invite financial disorder as the projects were proposed without research.

He said the Parliament had the prerogative of knowing the budget first and the leaks damaged the established norms and values of the parliamentary system.

Another NC leader and former finance minister Mahesh Acharya said during the third meeting, “All parties should be serious about the leaks, as it may cause serious consequence even in future. All parties should help maintain the dignity of the Parliament.”

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UML, Maoist Center sign 7-point agreement to unify; party to be named Communist Party of Nepal

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KATHMANDU — The two parties of left alliance — CPN-UML and CPN Maoist Centre — have finally reached an agreement on unification and signed a seven point agreement on the modality of the unification on Monday evening.

A meeting of top leaders of the two parties at late Monday evening officially approved the ‘left unity’ deal agreeing, in principle, on party leadership, organization and ideology.

UML Chairman and Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli, Jhala Nath Khanal, Madhav Kumar Nepal, Bam Dev Gautam and Ishwor Pokharel have signed the agreement on behalf of UML whereas Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, senior leaders Narayan Kaji Shrestha and Ram Bahadur Thapa have signed the agreement on behalf of the Maoist Centre.

In a seven-point agreement signed by eight leaders, the two parties have agreed to form Communist Party of Nepal(CPN), a leftist party with Marxist-Leninist ideology as its guiding principle.

Likewise, as per the agreement, People’s Multiparty Democracy (‘Janata ko Bahudaliya Janawawd’ known as Ja-Ba-Ja as propagated by later UML leader Madan Bhandari) and Maoism will be deliberated upon as the ideological lines of the party at the general convention of the unified party.

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UMl chair KP Sharma Oli and Maoist Center chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal will co-chair the party in a bi-chairman system until the general convention and that both will take turns in leading the government.

The agreement on parallel leadership will remain until the first general convention, while collective leadership model would be followed for other portfolios.

As per understanding reached between the two parties, Oli would head the government for the first three years, while Dahal would lead the government for the remaining two years.

According to the leaders present during the signing of the deal, the agreement was signed after interlocutors from the two sides hammered out a sketch deal on leadership, organization and ideology which would be given actual shape through a joint general convention in around a year and a half. However, the agreement on leadership and organization has not been disclosed in the written agreement.

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Leaders also said that UML and Maoist Center will have 60 percent and 40 percent stakes respectively in the steering committee, the central committee and other lower bodies of the new party.

Monday’s merger deal, given the size of the two parties, is the biggest political experiment of its kind in Nepal’s history which will have long-run impact on Nepal’s political, economic and social spheres.

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