Prachanda warns to surround PM Office and house if Oli fails to correct his mistakes

Shirish B Pradhan
·3-min read

Kathmandu, Feb 10 (PTI) Chairperson of the Nepal Communist Party's splinter faction Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda' on Wednesday warned that a million people would be forced to picket Singha Durbar and Baluwatar if Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli failed to correct his mistakes, as thousands of people staged a massive rally in the capital against dissolution of Parliament.

'Prime Minister Oli has committed a huge crime by killing the constitution and people have now understood it very well,' Prachanda told the rally organised by his faction at Bhrikutimandap in Kathmandu.

Prachanda warned that in the next protest rally he will mobilise a million people who will surround Singhdurbar, that houses Prime Ministers’ Office, and Baluwatar, the official residence of the Prime Minister.

He also warned Prime Minister Oli against deceiving the people by making false statements and threatening Election Commission and influencing other constitutional bodies.

'Both the Election Commission and the Supreme Court have come under unwarranted pressure from the prime minister. These are not good signs at all,' Prachanda said, adding that they have still faith in the constitutional bodies.

Prachanda asked both the Election Commission and the Supreme Court to give fair judgements without coming under the influence of the government.

Both Prachanda and the rival Oli group claim to control the Nepal Communist Party and the issue is being disputed at the Election Commission.

Wednesday's rally was part of the phase-wise anti-government agitation led by Prachanda and Madhav Kumar Nepal against the prime minister's controversial decision to dissolve Parliament. Some 50,000 supporters of the Prachanda-led faction attended the rally, amid tight security.

The rally comes days after the Oli faction held a mass gathering on Friday.

Nepal plunged into a political crisis on December 20 after Oli, in a surprise move, dissolved the House of Representatives, amidst a tussle for power with Prachanda. His move to dissolve the 275-member House sparked protests from a large section of the NCP led by Prachanda, also a co-chair of the ruling party.

The Prachanda-led faction had been holding anti-government protest rallies and public gatherings in various parts of the country, including Kathmandu. Last week, it led a nationwide general strike that paralysed normal life across the country.

Authorities had stepped up security in the capital for Wednesday’s rally. There were no reports of violence.

Addressing the gathering, former prime ministers Madhav Kumar Nepal and Jhalanath Khanal criticised Oli for his move to dissolve the House.

Oli, who is the chairperson of a faction of the NCP, has said he was forced to dissolve the House after knowing that the Prachanda-led faction was planning to file a no-confidence motion against him and introduce an impeachment motion against President Bidya Devi Bhandari.

Oli-led CPN-UML and Prachanda-led NCP (Maoist Centre) merged in May 2018 to form a unified Nepal Communist Party following victory of their alliance in the 2017 general elections. PTI SBP ZH ZH