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Madhesi leaders to visit New Delhi for talks on Nepal crisis

world Updated: Dec 05, 2015 19:05 IST
Utpal Parashar
Utpal Parashar
Hindustan Times
Nepal Constitutional Crisis

Upendra Yadav, a leading ethnic Madhesi protest leader, speaks in parliament in Kathmandu, Nepal. With Nepal’s Constitutional crisis still continuing, the leaders of protesting Madhesi parties are planning to arrive in New Delhi on Sunday to hold talks with Indian leaders.(AP Photo)

With no end in sight to the ongoing crisis in Nepal over the new Constitution, leaders of protesting Madhesi parties will head to New Delhi on Sunday to hold talks with Indian leaders.

United Democratic Madhesi Front, the umbrella organization comprising four Madhesi parties, has called the visit an opportunity to “apprise leaders of Indian political parties about the current situation in Nepal”.

The leaders who will visit New Delhi are Mahanta Thakur of Terai Madhes Democratic Party, Upendra Yadav of Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal, Rajendra Mahato of Sadbhawana Party and Mahendra Ray Yadav of Terai Madhes Sadbhawana Party.

Sources in UDMF say the leaders will hold talks with external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, national security advisor Ajit Doval, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and leaders of other political parties.

There is possibility of a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but nothing has been confirmed yet.

Madhesis, who are the dominant population in the Terai districts of Nepal bordering India, have been protesting for over three months seeking changes in the new Constitution promulgated in September.

They are demanding changes in the Constitution which will guarantee adequate political representation in government organs and fresh demarcation of boundaries of the proposed new states.

The protests, which have turned violent on several occasions have claimed nearly 50 lives and injured hundreds.

Nepalese people sit on the top of a crowded public bus in Kathmandu, Nepal. The Madhesi blockade of a key border point with India is leaving Nepal with only about 15% of its normal supply of gasoline, diesel and cooking fuel, and creating shortages of other goods including food and medicine. (AP Photo)

On Friday, the ruling parties and Nepali Congress agreed to amend the Constitution to accommodate some demands of the Madhesis and set up a political committee to look into fresh delineation of state boundaries.