It’s On! (Or is it?)

Ending a month-long constitutional stalemate, Nepalese Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal resigned today after just over a year in office. Addressing the nation, 57-year-old Prime Minister Nepal said, “It is already too late to table the annual policies, program and budget in the Legislature-Parliament. Despite having a clear majority in the House, I decided to tender my resignation, with the hope that peace process and constituent making process will be completed, as it would not be right to keep the nation at indecision and confusion in situation like this.”

And there has been a lot of confusion. Four weeks ago, the three major political parties agreed that they could not agree on a new constitution. Instead, they extended the process for another year, and in the meantime hammered out a three-point agreement. The prime minister’s resignation was key for the Maoists.

The other parties are demanding the dissolution of Maoist’s sister organization Young Communist League, which has been charged with violating law and human rights, as well as demand that Maoists return property seized during the conflict. The major disagreement between the Maoists and the other parties is about the issue of the integration and rehabilitation of Maoist army.

Because of the political deadlock, the discussion on major issues such as army integration, the structure of the government: presidential form or prime minister as the chief executive; questions about the numbers of states under federation and the judiciary system; and whether it will be independent or under parliament, is disrupted. Whoever leads will not have an easy time to get consensus on these issues.

–Rajneesh Bhandari

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