Former political heavyweight announces a comeback

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Gangtok, Nov 24 (UNI): After 17 years in political hibernation, veteran politician and former Deputy Speaker Ram Chandra Poudyal announced today to launch a movement for the protection of Sikkimese people and revived his dormant party Rising Sun.

Mr Poudyal, an active component in Sikkim's political history since pro-democracy movement in 1973, was a minister during L.D.Kazi's first democratic government in mid seventies and later sided with SDF in mid nineties, on request, to overthrow the 14-year old regime of Nar Bahadur Bhandari in the state.

A strong advocate of reservation for the Sikkimese Nepalese in the state assembly, Mr Poudyal went into political hibernation from the early 1990s and immersed himself into vedic and religious studies.

Now, Mr Poudyal said he has finished his studies and was coming back as he believed that all the Sikkimese communities-Nepalis, Bhutias and Lepchas- were under threat and their political rights must be protected. "The genuine Sikkim subject holders are under threat of their political rights been taken away," he said.

"I overthrew the monarchy, Kazi and Bhandari and if Pawan Chamling does not know how to protect the Sikkimese people, he must also be overthrown," Mr Poudyal said.

Highlighting the lack of opposition in the state, Mr Poudyal said Bhandari, the president of Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee should gracefully retire as he was incapable of being an opposition leader.

"I confer the oppositionship to myself," he said.

With the formal announcement of the revival of Rising Sun, Mr Poudyal said that he was hitting the roads from today and will be meeting old supporters and friends during an extensive tour of Sikkim.

Interestingly, Mr Poudyal's younger brother Somnath Poudyal is a cabinet minister in the ruling SDF government.

UNI

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