CPN-M cadres attack UCPN (M) election assembly
DAILEKH, Oct 30: Cadres of the CPN-Maoist have attacked at an election assembly organized by the UCPN (Maoist) and looted the election publicity materials at Hulakdanda of Dailekh district on Wednesday afternoon. The CPN-Maoist cadres attacked the election assembly with hurling stones and bricks at Singaudi of Hulakdanda, which lies at the election constituency no-2 in the district.
However cadres had taken UCPN (Maoist) election candidate Thir Bahadur Karki safely in a home. Two party cadres clashed as the CPN-Maoist cadres tore up the election posters and looted mikes, banners and election publicity materials belonging to UCPN Maoist candidate. A CPN-Maoist cadre was injured in the incident. The six police personnel deployed at the election assembly could not arrest the assailants. The election assembly resumed two hours late after deploying more police personnel from the District police office.
Govt, parties not to backtrack on poll
KATHMANDU, Oct 29: CPN-Maoist on Tuesday urged the government and the four major political parties to put off the upcoming Constituent Assembly (CA) election and hold a round-table meeting. But the government and the major political parties have made their stance clear, stating that it was too late to backtrack as the poll exercise had gripped the whole country. With the country only three weeks away from the poll, the CPN-Maoist has issued a press statement saying, “We humbly request the government and the four major political parties to put off the second CA election and take initiatives to end the existing political deadlock.”
The statement signed by CPN-Maoist Chairman Mohan Baidya appeals to other political parties, civil society members and intellectuals to take necessary initiatives in this regard. The agitating 33-party alliance lead by the CPN-Maoist is against the CA poll, claiming that it is not in the national interest as “it undermines the need for national consensus and is being conducted as per a master-plan of foreign power centers”. Minister for Information and Communications Madhav Prasad Paudel, who is also spokesperson of the government, said, “Though we are always positive about talks for a political settlement, we are not in a position to postpone the election as the Election Commission, the security agencies, the political parties and voters are now wholly engaged in the electoral exercise.”
But CPN-Maoist leader Hari Bhakta Kandel said, “An election without the 33 other parties will hold no meaning nor will it bring the desired constitution.” So this is not a real ´election but selection´ by the foreign power centers to push the country into crisis, he claimed. Despite their repeated attempts to hold a dialogue for consensus, they are forced to boycott the polls being held while ignoring their four-point demand, Kandel added. If the government and the political parties continue to ignore the CPN-Maoist request, they will be responsible for the resulting environment, he said adding, “we will exercise our democratic right to boycott the poll”.
Rejecting the proposal to postpone the election, UCPN(Maoist) leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha said, “The High-Level Political Committee and the government have already repeated their position that there cannot be any compromise on the November 19 election and no change in government.” “I personally tried my best to bring the Baidya-lead alliance into political consensus but that went in vain in the end,” he said. It would be better to bring the anti-poll forces into the constitution-building process by finding some alternatives, he added. Referring to the proposal, he said, “We still need time to understand the spirit of the proposal if they really want to have a political settlement”.
Meanwhile, CPN-UML General Secretary Ishwor Pokharel has said that the postponement of the election is bad not only for the government and the poll contesting parties but the CPN-Maoist will itself be harmed. “So we can have dialogues but cannot run away from the election,” he said. Government spokesperson Paudel also appealed for the anti-poll forces to be responsible and accountable towards the country. The CPN-Maoist has also called for the immediate release of its leaders and cadres arrested during protests in various parts of the country.
CPN-M ready to face govt action
KATHMANDU: Alleging that the government has presented itself in a militant way against a peaceful election boycott campaign, a CPN-Maoist leader today warned that the party was ready to face any government action. CPN-M secretary and coordinator of the 33-party front Dev Prasad Gurung warned that the party would resort to all forms counter movements as the government has been intensifying action against the CPN-M and the 33-party front.
“If the state fails to reconsider withdrawing attacks on us, we could use all forms of counter movement,” Gurung said at a press conference organised at the its party headquarters in Buddhanagar today. Cadres of more than 31 parties in the front have been rounded up in eastern region alone, he said. Earlier today party Chairman Mohan Baidhya issued an appeal to the major parties and the government through a press statement, asking them to halt the election process and take initiative for dialogue to find a political outlet through a roundtable conference.
He has appealed all the political parties, civil society and intellectuals to take necessary initiative. “It’s the political right and freedom of the people to either support or boycott the election, but the government has been intensifying arrests and has filed cases against them,” he said, adding that his party condemns such activities and demanding their immediate release. Gurung said the party was not considering going underground, claiming that all the leaders including Chairman Baidhya were available. However, Gurung, CPN-M Spokesperson Pampha Bhusal and another leader Hitman Shakya were present at the press meet. Party sources claimed that many leaders (besides Dev Gurung and Pampha Bhusal) were considering going semi-underground to avoid possible arrest after the government intensified arrests in different parts of the country.
On army deployment, Gurung claimed that the parties had deployed the army after they were defeated politically. “Attempting to hold election with the help of the army after shying away from talks was nothing but the political failure of the four parties and government. There is no significance of a technical election,” he said. Gurung further alleged that the government was plotting to implicate the cadres on false cases in the guise of searching for weapons. Gurung welcomed a number of student leaders from the C P Mainali-led CPN-ML to the party at the programme. They include general secretary of ANNFSU (Fifth) Santosh Koirala and treasurer Dinesh Regmi, among many others.
Arsonists torch NC, UML candidates’ vehicle
DHANKUTA, OCT 30 – Vehicles belonging to Nepali Congress candidate from Dhankuta -2, Anand Santoshi, and CPN-UML candidate Shanta Chaudhary from Dang constituency-2 were torched by unidentified groups on Tuesday night. A land cruiser (Me 1 Ja 237) used for election campaign was torched while it was parked outside Santoshi’s house at Dhankuta Municipality-7. A group of unidentified men sprinkled petrol on the vehicle and set fire to it. Both the front tyres of the vehicle were damaged in the inferno.
Meanwhile, a land cruiser (Ra 1 Ja 365) owned by Chaudhary was also torched last night. The vehicle was torched while it was parked outside a house at Dandagaun in Laxmipur of Dang district. Likewise, in Ghorahi, police intervened when a group tried to torch a vehicle of UCPN (Maoist) leader used for election campaign. Meanwhile, police have been investigating the incident. With the much-anticipated Constituent Assembly (CA) election drawing close, the rising anti-election activities have been posing challenge to security arrangements.
CPN-M union issues warning
KATHMANDU, OCT 30 – All Nepal Revolutionary Federation of Trade Union (ANRFTU), labour wing of the CPN-Maoist led by Mohan Baidya, on Tuesday denounced the arrest of its member by security forces. Saying that the security forces arrested its cadres while they were carrying out peaceful protests, the trade union, issuing a press statement on Tuesday, demanded an immediate release of its leaders and activists. The arrestees include central office party member of the union, Ishwor Bhakta Sunwar, and other members, the release said. The union has also warned the government of intensifying protests if its cadres were not immediately freed.
IED planted to foil Dahal’s Dolakha program
DOLAKHA, Oct 30: CPN-Maoist cadres have planted an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) at Charange of Bhimeshwor Municipality-13 to foil UCPN (Maoist) Chairman Dahal’s election program in Charikot at the wee hours of Wednesday. A bomb disposal team of the Nepal Army from Charikot-based Barda Bahadur Battalion has defused the IED today morning, said Captain Kshitij Shah. “If the IED were not disposed on time , it would cause heavy casualties,” he added.
Baidya-led party cadres planted an IED and placed wooden logs at various places across the road at Biruwa and Khawama in Bhimeshwor Municipality 72 hours before it stated that no violent activities would be carried out while boycotting the election. The district leaders and cadres have gone into hiding after carrying out these violent anti-poll activities in the region. Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal is scheduled to hold an election program at the district headquarters in Charikot today.