Kathmandu (Nepal),May 8 (ANI): Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal alias Prachanda on Saturday called of his party's indefinite general strike, but warned the government of Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal that it had two days time to respond to his demands.
Prachanda said his party would not engage in talks with the ruling parties, but would wait for their reaction to issues raised by his party concerning the new Constitution, the peace process and a national unity government before the party decides its next move.
A Nepal News report quoted Prachanda, as saying at a mass meeting of Maoists in Khula Manch: "The ball is now in their (government's) court. How we strike depends on the move they make."
Prachanda said the Maoists would carry out protests including picketing of the Singha Durbar before declaring a stronger stir.
"Our peaceful and disciplined general strike was just a trailer. They (parties) will see the entire film if they don't decide now," he said, adding that the Maoist leadership decided to call off the bandh not because of any pressure neither the party was backpedaling from its protest movement.
"It was not because of the peace rally or any other pressure that we decided to stop the general strike. In fact, we had been discussing for some days about changing the nature of protest and we only arrived at a decision Friday evening," he clarified, adding that the agitations, which the party describes as 3rd Janandolan, would not end until the goals are achieved. He also accused the government of trying to instigate violence in the Maoist demonstrations.
During his fiery speech, Dahal also vented anger at the media and 'Kathmandu elites' for not responding positively to the Maoist protest movement. He also insisted that the government-sanctioned 'vigilantes' hijacked yesterday's peace rally organised by the professional groups.
Prime Minister Nepal welcomed the decision that came after six days.
In a statement,Nepal said the decision would play a positive role for discussion, consensus and cooperation among the political forces.
He said, the parties have no alternative to consensus and cooperation to ensure that peace process concludes and a new constitution is written.
He urged the Maoists to seek solution of all problems through consensus, constitutional principles and democratic values.
The European Union and the United States also welcomed the Maoist decision to postpone the indefinite general strike.
In their statements, the ambassadors of Norway, Switzerland the United States of America as well as the Heads of the mission of the European Union expressed hope that this will prove to be a ecisive step in the pursuit of a solution to the protracted political deadlock. (ANI)