Nepal's Maoist leaders have suggested a referendum to decide the fate of the monarchy if the country is not declared a republic through parliament.
Maoist chairman Prachanda and his deputy Dr Babu Ram Bhattarai, recommended a referendum to Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala during their meeting on Sunday.
Dr Bhattarai said their first priority was to declare Nepal a republic through parliament but if that was not acceptable to the Nepali Congress, other alternatives, including a referendum, should be looked upon to decide the fate of monarchy as soon as possible, Kantipuronline reported.
Reacting to the suggestion, the prime minister told the leaders that a referendum would bring the monarchy into existence again.
Later, he informed CPN-UML general-secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal about the political alternative suggested by the Maoists.