New supplementary bill set to ease Madhes tensions

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Kathmandu, July 6 : In a sign that the agitating Madhes-based parties and the major three parties in the Constituent Assembly (CA) are mending fences and coming together over the Madhes issue, the two sides on Sunday reached an agreement to withdraw the supplementary amendment bill to amend the interim constitution registered at the CA and introduce a new supplementary bill to address the Madhesi demands.

A meeting of the top leaders of the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (CPN-M), Nepali Congress and Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist-Leninist (CPN-UML) and the agitating Madhes-based parties--- Madhesi People's Rights Forum (MPRF), Terai-Madhes Democratic Party (TMDP) and Mahato-led Nepal Sadbhawana Party (NSP-M) --- at the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction in Singha Durbar decided to replace the phrase 'Madhes' with 'Tarai'.

Emerging from the meeting, Nepali Congress leader Arjun Narshigh KC said the two sides have agreed to mention that Nepal will be a federal democratic republic country in article 138 of the interim constitution by respecting the aspirations of various backward federal regions and communities such as Dalit, indigenous and women and the desire of the Madhesi people for autonomous region.

According to Kantipur, MPRF coordinator Upendra Yadav said the Madhes-based parties suggested the issues to be mentioned in the to-be-tabled supplementary amendment draft bill to the three parties and they will endorse the bill if the bill was tabled as per their suggestions.

Likewise, UML leader Jhala Nath Khanal informed that multiple states can be established in Tarai as per the need.

Khanal added that a separate amendment proposal can be floated if the supplementary amendment bill to be registered by the government is unacceptable to the parties.

A meeting of the ruling Seven-Party Alliance (SPA) has been called to finalise the agreement reached among the six parties.

The six parties also reached an understanding to guarantee the recruitment of Madhesi people in the Nepal Army in the Constitution.

ANI

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