Nepali Congress (NC) President Sher Bahadur Deuba has proposed to form the next government under him.
Deuba made the proposal during the meeting of NC, CPN (Maoist Center) and Janata Samajwadi Party (JSP) he called at his residence in Budhanilkantha Friday afternoon to discuss formation of a new ruling alliance.
Maoist Center, that has been repeatedly proposing to make Deuba PM to topple the government of Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli, immediately supported the proposal but the meeting ended inconclusively after JSP sought time to take a decision.
"NC has brought a proposal to form the government for the first time. We will have to discuss the issue in our party," JSP Chairman Mahantha Thakur told reporters after the meeting. "We have been talking with PM Oli for withdrawal of cases against our leaders. Deuba has also assured to fulfill those demands."
JSP is currently divided on whether to support Oli or not. JSP leaders Baburam Bhattarai and Upendra Yadav, coming from erstwhile Federal Socialist Forum Nepal, have publicly demanded toppling of Oli government while leaders from the erstwhile Rastriya Janata Party like Thakur and Rajendra Mahato are negotiating with Oli. Erstwhile RJP leaders themselves are also not united in support of Oli with leaders like Mahendra Raya Yadav vehemently against that.
The three top JSP leaders met before heading for the three-party meeting. The meeting called on initiation of Bhattarai discussed about moving forward together. "Deuba said NC will form government and asked for our support. We have not been able to discuss this in our party. The proposal has arrived only today," Thakur added.
Maoist Center leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha said after the meeting that the party will soon withdraw support from the Oli government.
The main opposition party demanded resignation of Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli and decided to take initiative to form new government under the party through the central committee meeting last Friday.
Deuba called the meeting amidst criticism both within the party and without about not taking initiative to form the next government even after the decision.
Maoist Center Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and leaders including Narayan Kaji Shrestha and Dev Gurung; JSP Chairmen Mahantha Thakur, Upendra Yadav and Baburam Bhattarai, and leaders like Rajendra Mahato, Ashok Rai and Rajendra Shrestha; and Senior Leader of NC Ram Chandra Paudel, Vice-president Bimalendra Nidhi, General Secretaries Shashank Koirala and Purna Bahadur Khadka, former general secretary Krishna Prasad Sitaula, Spokesperson Bishwa Prakash Sharma and others attended the meeting that ran for around 30 minutes.