Madhesi protest: Nepal govt, Federal Alliance brace for bigger confrontation

The Federal Alliance that has the UDMF and other two dozen parties and ethic groups began their street protest aimed at paralysing the entire secretariat including that of the Prime Minister's office since Sunday.

Written by Yubaraj Ghimire | Kathmandu | Updated: May 16, 2016 5:00 pm
New Delhi: President Pranab Mukherjee with Prime Minister of Nepal KP Sharma Oli at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on Saturday. PTI Photo by Atul Yadav(PTI2_20_2016_000254B) Prime Minister of Nepal KP Sharma Oli (PTI Photo)

Exactly three months after the United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) suspended its five-month long movement on the eve of Prime Minister K P Oli’s state visit to Delhi in February, the Federal Alliance is trying to pick up the thread from where it was left earlier.

The Federal Alliance that has the UDMF and other two dozen parties and ethic groups, began their street protest aimed at paralysing the entire secretariat including that of the Prime Minister’s office since Sunday. It has been successful in bringing the national capital to a halt, but it is still too uncertain about its impact on the life of the government led by K P Oli and supported by the Maoists.

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The movement has participation of Front as well as hill, mountain and Kathmandu based ethnic groups which politically means, a movement directed against all the key political parties. The Maoists that had earlier taken a sympathetic stance toward the Madhesi Movement has remained indifferent this time following a whip issued by Party chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal not to support the alliance. Although this movement sends across a bigger psychological message, borders are open as usual and how the political course will follow will largely depend on how the government responds to the movement. The Human Rights monitors on the first day said there was remarkable restrain from both sides.

The alliance wants a review of the earlier decision of the ruling coalition to have seven federal units carved out, but it fails to clearly define the basis of federation and number of provinces it wants in the country. However, there are signs that the government and the alliance are inching for a much bigger confrontation as Oli stated publicly that all demands of the Madhesis have been ‘fulfilled’.

But the movement in Kathmandu comes at a time when there are speculations that Oli is ‘oath bound’ to step down following a ‘gentlemen agreement’ between him and Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal two weeks ago. Highly placed sources say Oli has agreed to propose Dahal as his successor after the budget scheduled to be presented in the House on May 15 is passed by the House.

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  1. K
    May 16, 2016 at 9:14 pm
    Nepal the independent state with the changing multi polar world will govern the country with genuine democracy with plural voting system.Hope Nepalese will give every souls of Nepali origin a voice to vote.
    1. H
      May 17, 2016 at 2:47 pm
      hill janjati are leading agitation instead of madhesi is indication that india plus madhesis only can do nothing in nepal ! nepal complety out of indian grip !
      1. S
        sulav Gurung
        May 17, 2016 at 5:45 pm
        Nepal has over 50 ethnic groups and if some ethinic groups are given provinces then other ethnic groups will demand their separate provinces too.. its not like 50% of the nepal potion are Madesis... 50% potion of nepal lives in terai or so called madesh region . Only 30% potion of madesh are madesis.. madesis are minority in madesh itself and they are spreading lies that nepal's 50% potion are madesis.. because of these lies Nepal is losing its most trusted friend India.. our relation will india has hit all time low.. time to bring the truth in front of the w world now and shame these handfull of fake messiah of madesh ..
        1. N
          May 16, 2016 at 5:50 pm
          Indian Media, please focus on your own issues (there are plenty of them), don't try to kick tyre of another sovereign country.
          1. S
            sachin jha
            May 18, 2016 at 1:27 pm
            Even we Madhesi origin Nepalese could imagine in dreams that Indian government will impose a blockade like they did recently for 5 months. Nor majority of Nepal, it's like waking up at night to see your brother, who is also your best friend chocking your neck.
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