NEW DELHI:The annual budget of Nepal will be presented by Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli’s government on Saturday amid political uncertainty caused by the call for change in government given by Mr. Oli’s chief ally, Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’.
On Thursday, Mr. Prachanda had said, “Due to the present political situation and the nine-point agreement with the CPN-UML, there is the possibility of forming a new government under my leadership.”
A sign of trust deficit
The agreement, concluded between Mr. Prachanda’s UCPN-Maoist and Mr. Oli’s CPN-UML, prevented a change in government on May 4 that Mr. Prachanda nearly imposed with the help of the opposition Nepali Congress leader Sher Bahadur Deuba.
Mr. Prachanda’s declaration of a change in government, at a press conference in Chitwan district on Thursday, has been interpreted as a sign of trust deficit between him and Mr. Oli.
The Commission on Enforced Disappeared Persons (CEDP), which is investigating Maoist and pro-monarchist war crimes committed during the decade-long civil war, has gathered new momentum under Mr. Oli’s rule targeting the Maoists.
Former Prime Minister and ex-Maoist ideologue Baburam Bhattarai says Mr. Prachanda has begun a series of bargaining manoeuvres with Prime Minister Oli and Nepali Congress chief Deuba. The political future of Nepal in the next one month will be determined by who secures Mr. Prachanda’s support.
“The budget begins a phase of politics which will see action from Mr. Prachanda, Mr. Oli and Mr. Deuba. The political scenario is expected to clear in the next three weeks as the budget will be cleared within the next one month,” Mr. Bhattarai told The Hindu from Kathmandu.
Mr. Prachanda asserted himself last week by uniting the UCPN (Maoist) with the breakaway CPN (Maoist) along with other minor groups to launch the CPN (Maoist-Centre) making himself more important in Nepal’s political process. However, he is yet to regain his previous might, says Mr. Bhattarai.