Fifteen citizen leaders including former chief of the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) Surya Nath Upadhyaya, former chief secretaries Leela Mani Paudyal and Som Lal Subedi, and others have said Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali should not sign agreements with long-term significance during his India visit starting Thursday.
The 15 also including Indira Dali, Rishi Adhikari, Krishna Gyawali, Khagendra Prasai, Deependra Bahadur Chhetri, Ninu Chapagai, Manavi Paudel, Yuvaraj Pandey, Surya Raj Acharya, Sharada Prasad Trital, Shoorveer Paudyal and Hrnaya Lal Shrestha issuing a statement on Wednesday have said Minister Gyawali should not sign any such agreement as he is part of a caretaker government.
They have argued that Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli has automatically become a caretaker PM after announcement of fresh election and urged Gyawali to not sign any agreement pointing at how treaties and agreements signed, or tried to get signed, capitalizing on difficult situation in the past forced Nepalis to suffer for a long time.
The statement also points how the House dissolution has been widely condemned as unconstitutional and the issue is sub judice in the Supreme Court (SC) along with expansion of the Cabinet by the caretaker PM and different constitutional and political appointments and reminds that no government that believes in democracy and good governance based on constitutionalism does and should take any decision of long-term significance in such situation.
"In this background, if the visit must be made due to situation of diplomatic commitment we draw serious attention of the government to not sign without broad national consensus any agreement or understanding or any document of that kind in a way that the country stands to make minimal gains on the issue of national importance or seems to make immediate minimal gains but results to losses in the long term or creates serious liabilities," the statement reads.
Minister Gyawali is going to India on Thursday for a three-day visit. Gyawali, who is going to participate in a joint bilateral meeting, will also discuss the issue of importing COVID-19 vaccines and the border dispute during the visit, according to the Foreign Ministry.