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NC, UML stand by PM.

KATHMANDU, April 30 -- Two major ruling coalition partners - the Nepali Congress and the CPN (UML) - have asked Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal not to bow down to the main opposition UCPN (Maoist)'s nationwide May 1 protest.

The two parties held separate meetings on Friday. Leaders of the parties agreed to back Prime Minister Nepal after they concluded that the Maoist move to capture state power through street protests was unconstitutional and illegal. "A change in the government is impossible through street pressure. Capturing state power through protests is totally undemocratic," said UML politburo member Pradeep Gyawali. "Therefore, he (prime minister) will not resign." The parties agreed to back the prime minister until a national consensus is forged among all major parties. The UML has urged the Maoists to end the protracted political deadlock and join discussions on crucial agendas.

"If the Maoists ignore our call to forge consensus, there is no need to hand over power to them," Gyawali said.

The NC came down heavily on the Maoists and urged the government to take stern action if their activities turn violent. "The Prime Minister was elected through a constitutional provision and he should not bow down in front of the Maoists," said NC Spokesman Arjun Narsingh KC, emerging from a central working committee meeting.

The UML also directed the government to act against the Maoists if the protests turn violent. "They have the right to protest peacefully. But if the protests turn violent, the government should definitely take stern action," Gyawali said.

The NC described the mass protest as a "direct breach" of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. "Their donation drive, attack on opponents and capture of government offices have led the country towards anarchy and chaos," NC Chief Secretary Ram Chandra Pokharel said.

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Publication:Kathmandu Post (Kathmandu, Nepal)
Date:Apr 30, 2010
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