Now, videotape scandal comes to haunt Prachanda

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Kathmandu, May 6 (ANI): As Nepal struggles to restore political stability, a 16-month-old videotape has surfaced to haunt the outgoing Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal alias Prachanda, who is shown boasting that his party had three tiers of armed numbering well over 100,000.

Dahal said what he mentioned in the tape that real strength of the PLA was 7,000 to 8,000 was only the number of the 'central regular armed force'.

He alleged that the broadcasting of the videotape, containing his speech in a different political situation, is a reactionary ploy to cover up the unconstitutional move of President Ram Baran Yadav to jeopardize the peace process.

Claiming that some elements have been trying to push them again towards war, Dahal said under no circumstances would they end the peace deal to start violence again.

Although, Prachanda denied Indian interference in Nepal's internal matters during his regime, he criticized New Delhi for denying support for his government to uphold civilian supremacy.

"India's lack of support for institutionalizing democratic norms have created suspicion and blamed India for breaking politics of consensus after the constituent assembly elections," nepalnews.com quoted Prachanda, as saying.

He added, "We will never tolerate any kind of interference into internal affairs of Nepal from any part of the world."

In his written statement, Dahal said his party is ready to engage in forming the new government if the president withdraws his move to reinstate Rookmangud Katawal as the Chief of Army Staff. He termed the president's move as 'rule of decree'.

Dahal defended his government's decision to oust Katawal by saying that it was taken to ensure civilian supremacy, which he said has been stalled by 'a kind of coup' of President Dr Ram Baran Yadav. (ANI)

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