POST B BASNET/KIRAN PUN
KATHMANDU, March 19: A day after the Baidya faction announced protest demanding resignation of the prime minister, the establishment faction has called a separate meeting of central committee leaders close to the faction for Monday to chart out its strategy against “rowdy hardliners.”
“We are holding a separate meeting to chalk out programs in the wake of aggressive campaigns announced by the hardliners against us. The venue, however, has not been fixed as yet,” said party leader Haribol Gajurel who is close to Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal. However, knowledgeable sources said the meeting will be held in Lalitpur at 11 am.
The decision to hold a separate meeting follows the meeting of the top leaders -- Dahal, Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai, Posta Bahadur Bogati, and Narayankaji Shrestha -- from the party establishment at Shrestha’s residence on Sunday.
Sources say the leaders reached a conclusion to immediately work out a plan against the hardliners, after the Baidya faction held a national gathering of the ex-combatants in Dang on March 14 to rally their support to bring down the government and foment an “urban insurrection”.
Sources say senior leaders from the hard-line faction, who have announced formal protests to topple the “anti-national” government led by their own party, and frame a “people’s constitution” in violation of the party’s principle of “democratic centralism”, are also holding talks with the “patriots and intellectuals” for the causes of nationalism and revolution.
At a press meeting on Saturday, the hard-line faction led by Senior Vice-chairman Mohan Baidya had accused the chairman of not being sincere toward implementing the decisions of the last CC meeting.
The press meet followed a recent three-day CC meeting of the faction-loyal members in Kathmandu. “The meeting had charted out political programs made public at press meet,” said a leader from the hard-line faction. Baidya and General Secretary Ram Bahadur Thapa were, however, strategically absent during the press meet.
Baidya and Dahal, who had strained relations for months, had begun hobnobbing with each other after the last CC meet two months back, but suspicion and mistrust between the two surfaced after the latter did not recall Bhattarai from the government and declined to formulate mass mobilization programs for “pro-people constitution” and “dignified” integration of the PLA into the Nepal Army (NA).
“They don’t share ideological positions and the reason behind reconciliation between Baidya and Dahal was the dissolution of the Bhattarai government. After the unsuccessful attempts to topple the government, the alliance finally broke,” said a leader close to Bhattarai.from Republica