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Monarchy in Nepal will end in a month: Maoists

By Shirish B Pradhan in Kathmandu
April 15, 2008 21:09 IST
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The Maoists, who are poised to head a new coalition government in Nepal, on Tuesday said that the 240-year-old monarchy will be abolished within a month.

The former rebels are five short of getting a simple majority on their own under the direct voting system, after they bagged 116 seats in the historic Constituent Assembly elections held last week. Results from 26 seats are yet to be declared. The mainstream parties, who could be potential coalition partners, were lagging far behind.

"I think within one month all these things (end of monarchy) should be clear and I hope and I expect that within one month we will organise the first meeting of the first assembly and that first meeting should abolish the monarchy," Prachanda said.

Prachanda's comments suggested that it is only a matter of procedure to scrap monarchy. Ending monarchy has already been incorporated in the interim constitution, he said.

The former school teacher, who is in the forefront for sacking the unpopular King Gyanendra, also discounted the possibility that there could be a demand for ceremonial monarchy.

"No, I don't think so. I don't think that from within the constitution assembly, there will be any kind of opposition because all parties have already taken their position against monarchy in favour of the republican system," he said. Some political leaders have suggested that Nepal should have some kind of monarch.

He said there is already heavy consensus on abolition of monarchy in the Himalayan nation. "I don't think there will be any problem. May be the monarch himself may try to resist," Prachanda said.

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Shirish B Pradhan in Kathmandu
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