Nepal’s largest democratic political party is unified with its breakaway faction
After five years and four months of their split, Nepali Congress and the break away faction Nepali Congress Democratic have united today amidst a grand ceremony of joint maha samiti meeting. Girija Prasad Koirala and Sher Bahadur Deuba has signed the agreement paper. This is yet another milestone in the political polarization that is taking place in Nepal in the past months. The unified party is expected to adopt the policy of federal democratic republic.
[more about the event here]
At the time of writing this post, Koirala just finished his speech to the gathering of the activists of the unified party. When the MC invited Deuba to address, he introduced Deuba as president of NC D which he immediately corrected: leader of Nepali Congress which received clapping from the activists.
At the time of split, Sher Bahadur Deuba was the prime minister and he wanted to extend the emergency to continue with the military action against the Maoists. Terming that extension as unnecessary and against the party policy, the party had expelled Deuba. That incident also marks the informal beginning of the regression in Nepal. It was widely believed at that time that Deuba extended the emergency as part of a grand design by the palace to create rift in the biggest political party in the country and ultimately make the government weak. The weakness was ultimately exploited by the king.
Girija Prasad Koirala, president of Nepali Congress, is the president of unified party. As per the unification agreement, NC Vice-president Sushil Koirala has become acting president of the united party while the party’s founding leader Krishna Prasad Bhattarai and NC-D President Sher Bahadur Deuba are in second and third place of the party hierarchy, after PM Koirala.
Two NC-D vice-presidents- Gopal Man Shrestha and Prakash Man Singh- are the new vice presidents of the united party. Ram Chandra Poudel and KB Gurung have continued as general secretaries while NC-D General Secretary Bimalendra Nidhi from the NC-D has joined the new committee in the same capacity and Dr Ram Baran Yadav from NC has been added to the committee as fourth general secretary.
All the 27 Central Working Committee members from NC-D and 37 from NC are continuing as CWC members of the unified party.
There was tentative understanding to give charge of Nepal Students Union to Pradip Poudel of NC and Nepal Tarun Dal to Mahendra Yadav of NC-D. Nepal Women’s Association leadership goes to NC and Aadibasi Janajati leadership goes to NC-D.
The leaders also have agreed to merge all party units from top to bottom to form collective committees and give the charge of president of these committees to the president who is senior to the other and had contributed more to the democratic movement. They have agreed to run village and constituency-level committees through the president and joint presidents if the units fail to agree on a senior leader to lead the committees.