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Prachanda seeks India's support

Nepal Maoist leader Prachanda seeks India's 'moral support' for free and fair polls to the Constituent Assembly.

india Updated: Nov 18, 2006 15:29 IST

Nepal Maoist leader Prachanda on Saturday sought India's "moral support" for free and fair polls to the Constituent Assembly there and expressed confidence that a peace accord between the Maoists and Koirala government would be signed on November 21.

"Firstly we are looking at moral support from Indian authorities for the conduct of free and fair elections to the Constituent Assembly," Prachanda, underground for 25 years and making his first public appearance in India, at a press conference in New Delhi.

He also thanked political parties in India including CPI (M) for helping in the initiation of a democratic process in Nepal.

Asked whether he wanted a review of the age-old 1950 Indo-Nepal Treaty, Prachanda said India's position with regard to Nepal have undergone a change in recent past. Similarly, Nepal was undergoing a change and hence a new relationship has to be developed with India.

Speaking along another Maoist leader Babu Ram Bhattarai, he expressed hope that a comprehensive peace agreement would be signed between the Maoists and the Nepal government on November 21.

Asked about the role of the King, Prachanda said that people wanted an end to the "feudal monarchy" as there was "hatred" among the people against King Gyanendra.