Prachanda steps down
In the wake of controversy emerge from the sacking of Army Chief, Nepal’s first elected Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, popularly known as Prachanda, resigned on Monday.
Announcing his resignation in a televised address to the nation, Prachanda said: “I have resigned from the post of prime minister for the protection of democracy and peace in Nepal.”
Prachanda also criticised the President Ram Baran Yadav’s directive accusing him of resorting to unconstitutional and undemocratic decision and thus giving birth to the crisis.
"The move by the president is an attack on this infant democracy and the peace process. The interim constitution does not give any right to the president to act as a parallel power," he said.
On Sunday, Prachanda had sacked the Army Chief General Rukumangad Katawal accusing him of defying the government’s orders by reinstating eight Generals retired by the Maoist administration. Katawal had refused to step down.
The President intervened in the matter few hours later and asked the Army Chief to continue on the post. He also reportedly turned down the prime minister’s proposal as the due procedure was not followed and advised him to follow constitutional provisions and seek consensus among the parties.
The political crisis further worsened in the Himalayan country as annoyed over Prachanda’s unilateral decision, the main alliance of the government CPN (UML) having 108 members in the 601 member constituent Assembly withdrawn support to the government reducing it to the minority government.
The cause of the months long crisis was the disagreement between the government and the Army over integrating former Maoist rebels (guerrilla) in the army; the former wanted to make guerrilla a part of the Nepalese Army while the latter was in strong opposition to it.
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