Bam Dev Gautam who has formed CPN (Unity National Campaign) after quitting CPN-UML has said he is ready to return to UML after the main-opposition party removed the age limit of 70 years for executive committees.
Gautam, who seems enthusiastic after the removal of age limit, has revealed he has already met Chairman KP Sharma Oli thrice and told him that he is ready to return, and added that he will rejoin UML if the leadership were to take initiative.
“Should I not know officially?” Gautam has said about the decision. “It has been done just to welcome Mukunda Neupane until now.”
He has hinted that he is ready to return to UML if Oli were to call him over the phone to inform about the decision and ask him to return. “What is suspension? Is it not to not allow to work for some time? This suspension may be only for the next six months, or until the 11th General Convention. The senior leaders came after taking decision about suspension and told me that chairman will take decision to take you. Chairman can just invite me over the phone,” he has elaborated.
UML leaders Surya Thapa, Surya Dhakal and others after the completion of meetings of both the House of Representatives (HoR) and the National Assembly on Wednesday got around Gautam and urged him to return to UML. “Go and tell KP Oli that he is ready to come,” Gautam has told them.
Gautam has revealed that the issue of removing age limit was discussed during his past meetings with Oli. “Friends in the party who have crossed 70 have been saying that age limit should be removed. Amrit Bohara, Asta Laxmi Shakya and Keshav Badal have also been saying that,” Gautam has quoted Oli as telling him. “Oli removed it to welcome Mukunda Neupane but did not remove it to take me.”
UML’s secretariat meeting held on June 2 removed the age limit kept by the statute convention held during the 10th General Convention.
Article 64 of the party’s statute mandates that any leader elected or nominated as member or office-bearer of executive committees should not have crossed 70 years. The provision, however, allowed any leader elected or nominated to that post before completing 70 years to serve that term even after completing 70 years.
The age limit now has been removed and decision taken to take the proposal to that regard to the statute general convention for endorsement, according to a UML leader.
The leader claimed that the age limit has been removed for Mukunda Neupane who returned back in the party from CPN (Unified Socialist) formed after split in UML.
But the provision has also removed age restriction for 71-year-old Oli and Senior Vice-chairman Ishwar Pokharel who will complete 70 in March 2024.