KATHMANDU, JUN 02 - Around 60 central leaders of the CPN-UML, including Vice-Chairman Ashok Rai, have threatened to quit the party en masse in response to their party's continued resistance to identity-based federalism.
Sources said signatures of 37 former lawmakers and 22 members of central bodies have been collected. Some district-level leaders are also involved in this campaign. "The number of leaders opting to quit the party is increasing significantly. Their resignation letters are being collected and they will be submitted to the party within four to five days," said UML Central Committee member Ajambar Rai Kangmang.
Politburo members Prithivi Subba Gurung, Ram Chandra Jha, Bir Bahadur Lama, Rajendra Shrestha, former lawmakers Dal Bahadur Rana, Kiran Gurung, Hitkaji Gurung, Raj Kumar Rai and Central Disciplinary Commission member Mangal Siddhi Manandhar have publicly threatened to quit.
Former lawmaker Pasang Sherpa and Politburo member Bijaya Subba have already tendered their resignation.
The party had assigned Secretary Bishnu Poudel, Politburo member Surendra Pande and leader Gokarna Bista to woo the Janajati leaders after they started quitting the party one after the other, but in vain.
"It is painful to quit the party where we worked for years, but then it went against the spirit of People's Multiparty Democracy and ignored our identity," Manandhar said.
Janajati leaders said they are planning to register a new party under Rai's leadership. "He is one of the bonafide leaders to lead the new party, but a final decision has not been taken yet. It will depend on the ongoing bilateral and multi-lateral talks with the Nepali Congress, leaders of various social organisations and local regional parties," Kangmang said.
Some Janajati leaders approached by the Post also said the new party registration plan may be deferrred in case the parties agree to revive the CA. Janajatis have been piling pressure on political parties to revive the CA.
"We are waiting to see if the parties agree to revive the CA. The CA will be a better place to fight for identity," said a senior leader. On Friday, a memorandum was submitted to President Ram Baran Yadav on behalf of the Nepal Federation of Indigineous Nationalities on these lines.
Janajati leaders are miffed with the party after it sought a clarification from leaders and members of the dissolved CA regarding their signature campaign for single identity-based federalism.
Posted on: 2012-06-02 ...