Maoists blame India for Nepal impasse

July 8th, 2008 - 2:02 pm ICT by IANS  

By Sudeshna Sarkar
Kathmandu, July 8 (IANS) With their attempt to form the government blocked even three months after the election, Nepal’s Maoists, who emerged as the largest party, are now blaming southern neighbour India for the deadlock. Though Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala resigned June 26, Maoist supremo Prachanda has yet not been able to step into his shoes since the newly elected constituent assembly, which also serves as Nepal’s caretaker parliament, has remained obstructed since then.

Three regional parties from the Terai plains, who together form the fourth-largest bloc in the house, have not allowed it to sit from June 26, saying they wanted the government to first amend the constitution and pave the way for the creation of an autonomous ‘Madhes’ state in the Terai plains.

Reacting angrily to the delay in the formation of a Maoist-led government, the Janadisha daily, regarded as the Maoist mouthpiece, Tuesday carried a front page report saying “The assembly has been obstructed due to India’s beckoning”.

Accusing New Delhi of directly interfering in Nepal’s internal affairs, the daily said there was a nexus between the bigger neighbour and Koirala as well as the leaders of the three obstructing Terai parties.

It said Koirala, who had resigned only after growing threats by the Maoists, was clinging on to power with India’s backing. It also said that it was India’s nature to try to derive mileage from the turmoil prevailing in Nepal.

The daily said Koirala had tried to secure the post of the first president of republic Nepal on India’s beckoning and had sent two emissaries to Maoist chief Prachanda with the proposal.

The allegation is not an isolated one. It marks the growing accusations by the Maoists about Indian intervention.

It also highlights the estrangement between India and the Maoists after a brief honeymoon.

During the 14 months of King Gyanendra’s army-backed reign, India brought the Maoists, then considered a terrorist organisation, and Nepal’s opposition parties together.

The pact drafted between them in New Delhi resulted in the end of the decade-old Maoist insurgency and the restoration of peace in Nepal.

Besides becoming unpopular with the Maoists, India is also not in the good books of royalists, who hold New Delhi’s secret mediation with the Maoists responsible for the fall of King Gyanendra’s government and finally, the abolition of monarchy in Nepal.

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