Can’t jeopardise national security for cordial ties with neighbours: Nepal PM

Kathmandu, July 14 (IANS) Nepal’s beleaguered Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli, who faces a no-confidence motion in Parliament after the CPN (Maoist Centre) pulled out, on Thursday hit out at India, saying he cannot compromise on national security in the name of maintaining cordial relations with neighbours.

“Maintaining good relation with neighbouring countries is an important aspect of national security. But we cannot jeopardise nationality for its sake,” said Oli, who is known for his anti-India stance.

Speaking at the National Security Seminar in Kathmandu, Oli said, “Neither we think against anyone nor we have spoken against one. We won’t let this country be used against others.”

Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba and CPN (Maoist Center) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’, who is in line to become the next Prime Minister, were invited to the seminar but both leaders opted to boycott it, said the Kathmandu Post.

Hinting at the absence of the two leaders, Oli said the issue of national security was not related to any particular person or party but the country as a whole.

“Competition should be for various other issues,” he said, adding, “But not on national security.”

Taking aim at the protests in Terai, Oli said the new Constitution had not discriminated against anyone. He said the new Constitution could only be amended as there was no provision for rewriting mentioned in it.

Oli said the government was ready to redraw the federal boundaries as per the demand of Terai-based political parties. “But such drawings should be a justifiable one,” he said, the Kathmandu Post reported.

His comments come as Pushpa Kamal Dahal looks set to make a comeback as the 39th Prime Minister of Nepal with the Nepali Congress and Madhes-based parties pledging to back him.

The Maoist Centre, which filed a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Oli in Parliament on Wednesday with the backing of the NC and CPN (Samyukta), appears confident about proving a majority in Parliament.

On Wednesday, Nepal Deputy Prime Minister Chitra Bahadur K.C. accused New Delhi of trying to topple Prime Minister Oli.

In an interview to a local online news portal, Chitra Bahadur K.C. said: “In fact, India was upset after we reached a transit deal with China. And they (Indians) found Prachanda (Pushpa Kamal Dahal) as a dummy character to fulfil its interest in Nepal.”

–IANS

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