Nepal constitution should be occasion for joy: India

Kathmandu, Sep 19 (IANS) India on Saturday said that completion of the constitution-making process in Nepal should be an occasion for joy and not agitation and violence, a day ahead of its official promulgation.

India’s Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar, who was in Nepal as the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy, said: “India has been strongly supportive of constitution-making in Nepal. We would like its completion to be an occasion for joy and satisfaction, not agitation and violence.”

“We hope that Nepal’s political leaders will display the necessary flexibility and maturity at this crucial time to ensure a durable and resilient Constitution that has broad-based acceptance,” he said.

The foreign secretary’s remarks came even as Constituent Assembly Chairperson Subas Chandra Nembang asked the members who failed to sign on Nepal’s Constitution, 2072, on Saturday, to put their signatures on the copies of the historic document by 4 p.m. on Sunday.

The extension of time given to the Constituent Assembly members was aimed apparently at bringing the disgruntled Madhesi parties onboard before the new constitution is promulgated on Sunday evening.

President Ram Baran Yadav is to announce promulgation of the constitution at a special function at 5 p.m. on Sunday, after which the Constituent Assembly, which was elected in November 2013, will be automatically dissolved.

However, the Legislature-Parliament will remain.

Jaishankar met President Ram Baran Yadav, Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and also key political leaders.

They included Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist) chairman K.P. Sharma Oli, who is expected to be the next prime minister, Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda and also held discussions with leaders from Madhesi parties and urged them to sit for talks.

Nepal has witnessed violence over the decision to divide the country into seven provinces, which has claimed at least 40 lives.

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