Nepal EC concerned over Maoists quitting govt

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Kathmandu, Sep 19 (UNI) Nepal Election Commission today expressed concern over the Maoists' decision to quit the eight-party government in the Himalayan Nation, saying it would seriously affect the preparations for elections to the Constituent Assembly slated for November 22.

The Maoists pulled out of the government yesterday and announced a nationwide stir to foil the elections.

Speaking at a regional conference of election officers for election management and implementation in Pokhara, Election Commissioner Nil Kantha Upreti said if Maoists did not join the electoral process it would hamper efforts to resolve the political crisis dogging the country, Kantipuronline reported.

''The agitation would affect the preparations for the elections,'' he said.

Election Commissioner Usha Nepal said that the EC can still hold the elections based on fully proportional electoral system if the parties reach an agreement to this effect.

The Maoist insistence on the fully proportional electoral system was one of the stumbling blocks during yesterday's four-party meeting.

Addressing eastern regional conference in Biratnagar today, Election Commissioner Ayodhi Prasad Yadav said there was no alternative to holding the elections on November 22.

''The election commissioners have put their lives at stake for holding the polls. The EC has finished all the technical preparations for the crucial elections,'' he said.

Mr Yadav urged the political parties to evolve a consensus over the issue.

UNI

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