Kathmandu, Oct 29: The seven coalition parties on Sunday failed to reach consensus on the Maoists' twin demand, which include declaring the Himalayan country a republic, a day before the special session of interim Parliament resumes.
The Maoists have called a special session of the Parliament to discuss their demand for proportional voting system and announcement of Nepal as a republic. Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koriala's Nepali Congress has opposed these demands.
The Nepali Congress (NC) and the Communist Party of Nepal (CPN-M) stuck to their stand.
Koirala said that the parties must abide by the agreements made in the past rather than making new political arrangements.
He urged the Maoists to withdraw their proposal from the Parliament to which the Maoists declined.
According to NC spokesperson Arjun Narsingh KC, the Prime Minister has said that the issue would now be decided in a democratic manner (read voting in the parliament).
"The meeting extensively discussed the two demands, but could not arrive at any conclusion," C P Mainali, General Secretary of CPN (Marxist and Leninist), was quoted by Nepalnews, as saying after the meeting.
"But the seven parties have expressed commitment to keep their unity intact," Mainali said.
With the failure of the talks, the special session of the parliament will go as scheduled on Monday, Mainali said, adding: "Parties would still prefer a negotiated settlement rather than a voting on the Maoist proposal."
In a last-ditch effort for a political compromise before the resumption of the special session, top leaders of the seven parties, including Maoist Chairman Prachanda were engaged in a hectic discussion on Sunday.
At the start of the meeting, Koirala had said the unity of the seven parties must be kept alive to hold the Constituent Assembly election successfully. He also called upon the allies to prepare for polls in March 2008.
The parties had held several rounds of bilateral and multilateral talks over the Maoist demands since the adjournment of the special session on October 16.
While the UML, the second largest party in the coalition cabinet, is largely supportive of the Maoists' 'special political proposal', which seeks a parliamentary proclamation to declare Nepal a republic and adopt proportional voting system, the NC has been against the demands.