Nepal CPN-UML obstructs parliament over “anti-national” bill

Terming as “anti-national” the Constitution amendment bill, Nepal’s main opposition party CPN-UML today obstructed the parliament, saying it has no authority to amend state boundaries to meet the demands of agitating Madhesis and other ethnic groups.
UML Vice Chairman Bamdev Gautam, while addressing the parliament shortly after the parliament meeting began, said they will not let the House proceedings move ahead as the amendment bill was “anti-national”.
“The parliament turned Constituent Assembly has no rights to amend state boundaries. Hence, this proposal is unconstitutional. Federalism is about moving ahead together in unity with the mountain, hill and tarai regions, it is not about creating multi-states through division,” Gautam was quoted as saying by The Kathmandu Post.
He termed the government’s move as anti-national.
UML lawmakers rose from their seats after which Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar postponed the meeting for 3 PM tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Nepal witnessed massive anti-government protests for the second consecutive day today against the Constitution amendment bill.
An indefinite district-wide general strike has also been called in Arghakhanchi district in protest against the changes to the province borders introduced in the constitution amendment bill in parliament.
As per the provision in the constitution amendment bill, Arghakhanchu, Palpa, Gulmi, Rolpa and Pyuthan would be split from Province 5 and placed under Province 4.
Protests have erupted in Butwal and Pyuthan where transportation was completely put on halt and all the shops while educational institutions remained shut.
The shutdown has adversely affected the people in the districts as most educational institutions, factories, market, and transport are closed since yesterday.
The government had on Tuesday taken the step a day after the 15-day ultimatum served by the Federal Alliance for implementing the three-point deal expired.
The amendment bill aims to accommodate the demands of the agitating Madhesi and ethnic groups that include citizenship and boundary demarcation issues among others