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Yechuri in Nepal, favours a democratic republic

By Shirish B. Pradhan
May 02, 2008 17:16 IST
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Senior Communist Party of India-Marxist leader Sitaram Yechuri, who played a key role in bringing the Nepal Maoists into mainstream politics, has said India favours the consolidation of the process of forming a democratic republic through the drafting of a new constitution for the country at the earliest.

Yechuri, who is in Nepal on a two-day visit, expressed confidence that all issues, including the formation of a new government and drafting of a new constitution, will be resolved through a consensual approach. "We basically came here to express our congratulations and best wishes in their efforts to consolidate the process for the formation of a democratic republic," he said after meeting Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala and Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist chairman Prachanda today.

"Indian people welcome the results of the constituent assembly election, which was a historical step towards building a modern Nepal," he said.

With regard to Prachanda's recent remarks about scrapping the 1950 Indo-Nepal Peace and Friendship Treaty, he said: "Our party has been saying that there is a need to have a fresh look at the treaty, which is nearly 60 years old. Things have changed both in Nepal and in India in the last 60 years, so the treaty has to be updated," he stressed, adding that "the 1950 treaty is not on the agenda at the moment, now the agenda is drafting a new constitution."

"After the constitution is drafted, parliamentary elections will be held and a new government will be formed and that government will negotiate the treaty," he pointed out.

"When I met the prime minister, Prachanda and (Communist Party of Nepal-United Marxist Leninist general secretary) Madhav Nepal I found that they were all committed to consolidating the process for the formation of a democratic republic," Yechuri said.

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Shirish B. Pradhan
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