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Nepal celebrates democracy amidst confusion

world Updated: Apr 24, 2010 12:33 IST
Utpal Parashar
Utpal Parashar
Hindustan Times
Nepal

Amidst growing uncertainty over the status of the peace process and continuing political deadlock, Nepal on Saturday marked the fourth anniversary of the peoples' movement that ousted monarchy and reinstated democracy.

The main function to mark the 19-day movement called Janandolan-II was held at Tundikhel in the capital where dignitaries including President Ram Baran Yadav and Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal were present.

"We were able to bring historic change on this day. But challenges like adopting the new constitution on time and bringing the peace process to a logical conclusion still remain," the Prime Minister stated in his address.

He asked all parties to rise above their differences, complete the constitution within the May 28 deadline as well as ensure integration of thousands of former Maoist combatants into the national mainstream.

"This is not the time for allegations and counter allegations but for consensus and consultation. We should not allow divisive forces to benefit from the present confusion and complete the task at hand," said Nepal.

Although Janandolan-II was a peaceful agitation where millions poured into the streets, Nepal is bracing itself for violence as the opposition Maoists have begun imparting 'military training' to its cadres for a 'decisive war'.

From May 1, the party will stage agitations on the streets to remove the present coalition government and attempt to ensure that the new constitution gets adopted within deadline.

All this comes at a time of increased differences among the major parties who are offering suggestions to extend the term of the constituent assembly and holding fresh elections if the new constitution is not adopted on time.