Indian pro-Hindu leaders provoking Nepali royalists against republicanism, federalism and secularism in Nepal

Indian pro-Hindu leaders provoking against republicanism, federalism and secularism in Nepal


Anil Giri, The Kathmandu Post, MAR 29
Former Prime Minister Krishna Prasad Bhattarai (KP) came out of a self-imposed political dormancy on Sunday, with a call to revive the 1990 constitution and monarchy. While this came as a surprise to many, sources said, it was “a well orchestrated and calculated move” mounted by the religious right to confront republicanism, federalism and secularism - bedrock of Interim Constitution and post-2006 politics.

“It is not Kali Baba or Pilot Baba who are behind these developments, but the politics of the right and a number of political figures,” said an NC source.

According to a blow-by-blow account obtained by the Post, some “serious persuasion and planning” has gone behind Bhattarai’s statement and the conservative force, though a small one, runs across the party line.

A series of meetings among a section of pro-royalist Nepali Congress leaders was convened at the residence of former lawmaker Omkar Shrestha in Lalitpur after the  demise of Girija Prasad Koirla last Saturday. “
Once-powerful NC stalwarts, and now discredited leaders, such as Khum Bahadur Khadka and Govinda Raj Joshi were notably present in these meetings,” said the NC leader.

On Saturday, said the leader, a meeting at Shrestha’s residence decided to urge Bhattarai to join active politics and take a lead in opposing the three agendas - republicanism, federalism and secularism.  “Since the very beginning of the republican surge, Kishunji has been against the idea of federalism, republicanism, and secularism,” Shrestha told the Post.

According to Shrestha, Kishunji will now get into active politics “anytime.”

Vice President Paramanda Jha, of MJF, was the first high-ranking official to come out in the open in support of a Hindu state on March 13 in Dhangadhi. He was on the way back from the Indian holy city of
Hardwar. “He held a series of meetings with pro-Hindu organisations in Kathmandu on his return. Their intent is clear — reviving monarchy via a Hindu state,” said a leader who has closely followed these developments. 

On March 23, Raj Nath Singh, former chief of Bharitya Janata Party (BJP), who was here to condole
GPK’s death, said he was in support of “a benevolent Hindu state.” Singh, during an interaction in Kathmandu, said, “ I would personally be one of the happiest men if Nepal re-adopted Hinduism as the state religion.”

Before making the public statement, he had met former king Gyanedra at his Nagarjun bungalow for two hours, discussed the future political course and the strategy to revive the Hindu state, said a close aide of Gyanendra.

Gyanendra, according to the aide, is all set to get into active politics. “He has become very active in recent days, and so are his close aides. It is obvious. His mobility has increased. He has

upped the ante and scaled up his activities,” said the aide.

After his meeting with the BJP leader, Gyanendra mustered courage to give the interview (to Avenues TV),” said a source close to him.

Soon, on March 24, Deputy Prime Minister Bijay Kumar Gachhadar of MJF (Loktantrik) said the new constitution will affirm
Nepal’s identiy as a Hindu state and the “Hindu identity of Nepal shall be never compromised.” He made the remark at a programme organised by World Hindu Federation in the Capital.

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