Prem Sagar Poudel -
Chairman- Nepal-China Mutual Co-opration Soceity- -
Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, who recently used the US Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) card to perpetuate the government, now appears to be working to reconcile the parties. On the surface, Prime Minister Oli seems to be in favor of the unified NCP. However, this is just a step to show the cadres. Not only Chairman Oli but many leaders around him are not thinking of including the Nepal-Khanal faction.
Oli's strategy is to talk alone rather than as a group to convince the leaders on the Nepal-Khanal side. This strategy seems to have worked to some extent. Oli has taken Bishnu Rijal, who worked close to leader Madhav Nepal, with him using the same strategy. Rijal was the Deputy Chief of the then NCP (NCP) foreign affairs department while Nepal was the Chief. A meeting of the UML General Assembly Organizing Committee held on 10th Baishakh has assigned him to the same post. Rijal is the niece in law of Finance Minister Vishnu Poudel in relation.
When Vishnu Poudel was the Water Resources Minister, Rijal was the Press Advisor to the Water Resources Minister. Due to this experience, Nepal appointed him a press advisor when he became the Prime Minister. At that time, Poudel was in the Nepal group. Even now, Rijal's father-in-law Gopiraman Upadhyaya is in the Nepal group. Joining the Oli group by Rijal, which has been close to Nepal for a long time, is a positive sign for Chairman Oli. At present, Rijal is working to bring other leaders in the Nepal-Khanal faction to Oli's side.
Recently, Prime Minister Oli and Leader Nepal held talks at Hotel Marriott in Kathmandu Naxal. It is said that only Prime Minister Oli spoke for more than an hour during the two-hour long talks. Nepal only listened to Oli's words and reiterated his previous stand. The Nepal-Khanal faction had been urging Oli to return back from the decision of the 28th Falgun.
Oli had called a meeting of the UML Central Committee on 28th Falgun after the Supreme Court ruled that the unification process of the NCP (NCP) was not right. The meeting decided to manage the former Maoist leaders who supported Oli in the difficulties. Leader Nepal has been demanding to take that decision back and take the party before 2nd Jeshtha or before the unification. The NCP (NCP) was formed by uniting the UML and the UCPN (M) on 3rd Jeshtha 2075.
According to Chairman Oli considers the management of leaders including Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa as the first condition as they help him while in bad situation created by the Nepal-Khanal group along with UCPN (M) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal. Even after the court's decision to separate the UML and the Maoists, Oli has made it clear that he will not be able to separate from the management of the leaders like Badal who are ready to resign from their parliamentary seats. Due to which the Nepal-Khanal group can only return to that UML, not to the UML on 2nd Jeshtha.
The meeting held on 10th Baishkh also divided the responsibilities of the UML leaders. Badal has been added to the standing committee. The Nepal-Khanal group will now return to the UML after 10th Baishakh. In other words, Badal will remain a member of the UML Standing Committee even after Nepal-Khanal camp return to the UML headed by Oli. The Oli faction is thinking of laying the red carpet only if the Nepal-Khanal faction accepts all the manipulations made by the UML in the meantime. Behind all these decisions, the Oli faction seems to want to send a message to the Nepal-Khanal faction that it is better not to join the UML.
Only show off:
UML youth leader Yogesh Bhattarai had reached Baluwatar on Wednesday morning to meet Oli. Leader Bhattarai had urged Chairman Oli to move the party forward in a united form. Along with this request, Bhattarai had indicated that Leader Nepal wanted to have a dialogue with Oli. Bhattarai's gesture was a better alternative to Oli, to show that he was in the united party.
Oli called to meet Nepal in front of Bhattarai. Leader Nepal, who received Oli's phone call, was discussing with the leaders in his favor about the explanation asked by Oli. According to Leader Nepal, Oli asked him to come to Baluwatar. Nepal refused to go there. While discussing where to meet, Nepal asked to come to the Tulsilal Memorial Foundation, Chyasal in Lalitpur. Nepal-Khanal leaders have the majority in the foundation. After Oli refused to go there, Nepal proposed the name of Everest Hotel. Oli said if we are going to meet at the hotel, then let's meet at the Marriott Hotel.
At the request of leader Jhala Nath Khanal and Nepal, Oli had a group discussion with the leaders of the dissidents at the party office in Dhumbarahi on 2nd Chatra. Oli had tried to hold a one-on-one discussion with Nepal even then. After leader Nepal refused to meet Oli alone, Oli went to the party office with the second generation leaders. The discussion was organized with the idea of ¿¿inviting the Nepal-Khanal group in the tea party program of the UML leaders convened by Oli in Baluwatar on 3rd Chaitra. In addition to this, Oli went to meet the Nepal-Khanal faction to stop the gathering of national cadres organized by the group on 4th and 5th Chaitra.
In the meeting that took place about three months later, Nepal had said that he would not abide by the decision of 28th Falgun.
Oli was of the opinion that he would not back down from the decision under any circumstances. Even now, the UML is in the same situation as the discussion held on 2nd Chaitra. Meanwhile, Oli has also convened various meetings of the CPN-UML and sought clarification from some leaders and parliamentarians of the Nepal-Khanal faction. Oli, who was shocked after the leaders of the Nepal faction crossed the floor to perpetuate the Maoist government in Karnali, wants to take action against 27 pro-Nepal-Khanal MPs in recent times.
Oli, who has not backed down an inch from his plan, is one of the reasons behind the talks with the other side, "to show that I was involved in building a united party among the cadres." This is just Oli's showing teeth. He has been making the leaders of Nepal-Khanal faction jobless. The second round of talks with Nepal held at the Marriott Hotel on 9th Baishakh was not as fruitful as the first day. After the talks, Nepal reached Janakpur with a heavy heart. In Province No. 2, he gave support to the cadres who were on his side. On his return to Kathmandu, he went to the house of leader Bamdev Gautam. From the airport, Nepal reached Gautam Niwas Bhaisepati directly.
Oli had called Gautam to Baluwatar after talks with Nepal broke down. At the dinner meeting held in Baluwatar, leader Gautam also spoke like leader Nepal. Leader Gautam replied to Oli that everything was getting worse because of him. When leader Gautam criticized Oli saying that the problem was due to his habit of not following the party rules, he listened to Gautam calmly. In response, he said, "Nepal side leaders have not done any self-realization themselves. How can I give them place in the party¿ 'As the debate soared, Gautam left dinner in the middle.
After knowing that he had left the dinner meeting with Oli in the middle, Nepal had arranged to meet Gautam by phone from Janakpur. Nepal also went straight to Bhaisepati from Airport to show how important this meeting is. There was also a discussion between Nepal and Gautam on the steps taken by Oli. Lately, Nepal, which has been gradually being isolated from his own group, he hasn't many alternatives.
Oli also has the biggest ego problem with Nepal right now. Therefore, he does not seem to be positive about Nepal. Oli has been thinking of gradually returning the leaders around Nepal to the UML. If his thinking succeeds, many leaders who have been working for Nepal will return to Oli's side. It is not easy for Nepal to open another party because of the thinking of the people to vote for the Sun.
On the other hand, there is a possibility of opening a new party and uniting with the Maoists. However, the UML cadres who could not get along with the Maoists even during the unity in the past may not support Nepal's move. Therefore, Oli is thinking of taking Nepal to a state of no choice and ending his political career. For this, Oli seems to be accelerating the talks with leaders Gautam and Jhala Nath Khanal. In addition, talks with Nepal's second-tier leaders will move forward in an equally intensive manner.
MCC as the problematic
As the second phase of Corona grew, Oli called UCPN (M) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal on 3rd Baishakh. Dahal was at a function in Lalitpur when Oli's phone rang. Oli wanted to discuss with Dahal and Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba. Dahal had informed Oli that he would come to Singha Durbar only, on the proposal of meeting in Baluwatar by Oli. After Dahal's bsence, Oli turned the discussion with Deuba into an all-party meeting.
During the Corona transition, many speculated that the government had called for a discussion on transition management. Oli convened the meeting when he power-sharing effort between the Nepali Congress and the Maoists was in its final stages. During the meeting, Oli did not talk much about transition management. He said the speaker was uncooperative with the government. Speaking on the issue of non-cooperation by the Speaker, he said that the MCC is stuck even after reaching in the Parliament. 'Speaker Agni Sapkota has not allowed the MCC to move forward using his discretionary power. As Sapkota is trying to move forward in an unconstitutional and apolitical manner, if he does not table MCC in the House of Representatives on 7th Baishakh then we should look for an alternative to the Speaker.
Earlier, Foreign Minister Pradip Gyawali, speaking in Parliament, had requested to move the bill under consideration in the parliament including MCC. Minister Gyawali had clarified that work was being pending in the parliament while the government was being criticized for not giving work to the parliament. After the all-party meeting, Minister Gyawali said that the MCC decision could not be presented in the parliament due to the speaker. He said, ‘The MCC agreement has been suspended for nearly two years. Whether to approve or not is the business of Parliament. Leaders of all parties have a common view that the Speaker should not be allowed to block any bill in the Parliament for a long time using his discretionary power. Parliament does what it does, but the business given by the government cannot be held.'
The Congress-Maoist coalition government had signed the MCC agreement with the United States on 29th Bhadra, 2074 BS. The provision that the agreement will come into force only after it is passed by a two-thirds majority of the Nepali parliament has been signed and accepted. The agreement was not presented in the then parliament as the federal and state parliamentary elections were held immediately after the signing. The UML and UCPN (M) governments formed after the election could not move the MCC forward.
Due to which this issue has been under consideration in the Parliament for a long time.
After a dispute over the MCC, the NCP (NCP) had formed a three-member task force on 20th Magh, 2076 B.S. The task force consisted of Jhala Nath Khanal and Foreign Minister Gyawali and Bhim Rawal. In the report submitted by the task force, Khanal and Rawal are against the MCC, while Gyawali has presented his argument in favor of the MCC with a 15-point different opinion than the Khanal and Rawal.
The biggest controversy seems to be over whether MCC is part of the Indo-Pacific strategy or not. The Indo-Pacific Strategy, or IPS, is the national security strategy of the United States. It is operated by the US military. The MCC seems to have been interpreted as a way for US troops to enter areas bordering China, including Nepal, to disturb China. Due to which, even though it is a development project, the public opinion that it should not be passed is getting stronger. Prime Minister Oli is also confident that the MCC will not be passed by Nepal's parliament. However, he acknowledged by moving it forward, the opposition parties can be chased away on the basis of international power.
The United States has not been happy with the Maoists since the conflict. After the attack on the American Information Center in Kamalpokhari, the United States began to look at the Maoists differently. The United States has listed the Maoists as terrorists after the Maoists began stepping up attacks on American citizens. Shortly after entering the peace process, the Maoists were removed from the terrorist list at the request of the Government of Nepal.
Now, again, Americans are raising their voices about the use of child militia during the Maoist war. The United Nations has set up a commission to investigate war crimes in Sri Lanka. It seems that the Americans are also considering the formation of a commission to investigate the use of child militia in Nepal. In such a situation, Maoist Chairman Dahal will face the most difficulties. Even now he is walking on the difficult path.
The Nepali Congress seems to be in favor of passing the MCC from the parliament anyway. Oli has openly advocated for the MCC. Even if Oli is open in, MCC is just a 'card' for him until he has power. Using this function makes it easier to prolong the life of MCC. Recently, while the Congress and the Maoists were getting ready to share power, Oli threw the MCC card. This card seems to have done two things.
1. Making the Maoists agree on the MCC:
The Maoists are of the view that the Oli government should be dismissed anyway. For this, the Maoists should start cooperating with the Congress. As the issue of cooperation with the Congress moves forward, the issue of whether to pass the MCC or not becomes important. In such a situation, it is not possible to say that Dahal will not pass the MCC. This decision will be very costly for Dahal as power cooperation will only move forward after signing a paper on the issue of passing the MCC.
A large section of the Maoists is against the MCC. Such an agreement with the Congress to share power tomorrow will widen the gap between the party president and the party cadres. In such a situation, frustration will increase among the cadres. The Oli side is likely to take advantage of this again. On the other hand, if he does not agree on MCC, it will be difficult to remove the Oli government. Dahal seems to have the biggest loss, if the Oli government's life increased.
2. Excluding Dahal:
If he does not agree on MCC, Dahal will not be excluded among the party cadres. However, his image as an anti-American leader will be established in the international community. Dahal is not comfortable these days as he does not have good relations even with China. In Nepali politics, there is a possibility of a parliament without Dahal after the upcoming election. In such a situation, Nepal will be isolated even without being a party and Dahal being a party. His former colleagues have already started this process.
Excluding Dahal means not even discussing the alternative of the government. The MCC card seems to do just that. The Americans won't do any mistake to support Dahal leaving Oli. As a result, not only the ruling coalition of the Maoists and the Congress but also the electoral coordination is not easy. Dahal betrayed the Congress in the past; MCC seems to be another obstacle to stop this coordination. Due to which, it seems that Deuba will be compelled to participate in the election to be held by the Oli government whether he wants to or not.