Constitution Amendment Proposal: Nepali parliament disrupted

Kathmandu, Dec 2: The opposition parties in the Nepali parliament have been disrupting proceedings in protest against the proposed amendments in the Constitution tabled earlier this week.

The protests by the opposition Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxists-Leninists), Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist-Leninist), Rashtriya Janamorcha Party Nepal and Nepal Workers Peasants’ Party follow the tabling by the government of the constitution amendment proposal on Tuesday, Xinhua news agency reported.

The tabling of the constitution amendment proposal seeks to meet the demands of agitating Madhesis and other ethnic groups whose protests last year left more than 50 people dead.

CPN (UML) Vice Chairman Bamdev Gautam on Thursday described the amendment as anti-national and said his party will not allow the House business to proceed.

“The government has brought in the constitution amendment proposal to split the hill region from the Terai which is not acceptable to us,” Gautam said.

Anti-government protests have spread in various parts of the Himalayan nation against the proposal.

Meanwhile, Madhes-based parties, agitating under the banner of the United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF), have refused to back the proposal saying it was not acceptable in its current form, in a blow to the ongoing efforts of Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda” to achieve reconciliation with groups agitating over the national charter.

The government’s amendment proposal seeks to carve out a new state in the western region of Nepal to meet the demands of the ethnic Madhesi community. The government requires a two-thirds majority in parliament to secure passage of the proposal.

Nepal introduced the new constitution on September 20 last year after it became secular republic in 2008 with the overthrow of the 240-year-old Shah monarchy.

–IANS

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