Although three major political parties made a deal and passed the Conduct of Business of Legislature Parliament to pave the way for conducting the hearing on the appointment of chief justice, justices and ambassadors, the continuing boycott of Legislature Parliament by the Madhesh-based parties threatens the deal.
The agreement of the major parties gives space and legal force to implement the constitution. But as long as a large section of people and their representatives reject the deal, the legitimacy of the whole process will be questionable.
“We don’t care what they did. Of course, three parties have two thirds of majority and they can do whatever they want such as they did in promulgating the new constitution. Until the constitution is rewritten, it is unacceptable for Madheshi people,” thundered Mahanta Thakur, president of Terai Madhesh Loktantrik Party, addressing the second general convention of the party in Nawalparasi. “We are demanding justice from three major parties and our struggle will continue till our demands are fulfilled.”
As TMLP Chair Thakur was addressing the masses, main opposition leader Sher Bahadur Deuba, along with RPP leader Pashupati Sumsher Rana, was at the inaugural dais, alongside the guests from Indian political parties. However, CPN-UML leader and Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli and Maoist Center leader Prachanda did not attend the function.
Along with Thakur, Sadbhvabana Party leader Rajendra Mahato also called for the leaders of three parties to take the initiative to solve the Madheshi issue by rewriting the constitution. “If the government in Kathmandu delays the process, it will have to pay a higher price in the future. We can even paralyze life in Kathmandu any time and any day,” said Mahato.
As three major parties are considering to hold elections as per the constitution, Madhesh-based parties have been demanding the rewriting of the constitution.
“You have the numerical strength. Under this strength, you can rule the country. As long as three parties do not address our demands, Madheshi people cannot accept the constitution,” said Mahato.
Nepali Congress leaders have been showing soft stand towards the issues raised by Madheshis but they are yet to make their official stand public on the issues.
“Nepali Congress will take initiative to address the Madheshi issues. It is impossible to implement the constitution without getting the Madheshi people on board,” said former prime minister and leader of Nepali Congress Sher Bahadur Deuba.
Although main opposition party Nepali Congress is stressing the need to address the issues raised by Madheshi Front, any kind of consensus is yet to happen. CPN-UML and Maoist Center leaders do not agree on rewriting the constitution.
“Certain articles are amended. Nobody has the right to rewrite this constitution which was approved by a two thirds majority of Constituent Assembly,” said Prime Minister K.P Sharma Oli. "As per the plan, we will hold the local polls in November, provincial polls in March 2017 and elections for Legislature Parliament in November that year. This is the political roadmap. If they come on board, we will welcome them.”
Maoist Center leader Prachanda also rejected the demand to rewrite the constitution. “If we start rewriting the constitution, we will lose all the achievements gained through the People’s War and People’s Movement II. We can amend the constitution but the question of rewriting is impossible,” said Prachanda.
Shutting down Nepal completely, CPN-Maoist led by Netra Bikram Chand Biplab has shown that the new constitution will face the challenge not from the Madheshi front but they will also be a force to reckon with in that regard. Madheshi leaders are demanding rewriting the constitution but Maoist leader Biplab is demanding to scrap the constitution.
Given the political scenario, Nepal is heading towards another phase of instability.