Kathmandu: Amid deepening political crisis over the sacking of the Nepal Army chief by the Prime Minister on Sunday, the position of the Maoists-led coalition appeared shaky as a key partner withdrew support to the eight-month old government.
Prachanda, who is headed for a major confrontation with the Army, faced a major setback when the second largest coalition partner CPN(UML) with 108 members in Parliament, said it was quitting the government because the Prime Minister had unilaterally sacked general Rukmangad Katawal.
“We decided to withdraw our support to protest the prime minister’s unilateral decision,” CPN-UML party general secretary Ishwar Pokhrel said.
However, the Terai-based Madhesi Peoples Rights Forum (MPRF) with the strength of 51 lawmakers, are yet to announce its position on the issue. However, the Madhesi Peoples party has joined 17 other parties, including main opposition Nepali Congress and CPN-UML to oppose the decision to sack the top commander.
The CPN-Maoist with 229 seats in the Parliament needs the crucial support from MPRF and other small parties to obtain a majority in the 601 member Constituent Assembly tasked to frame a new constitution for the country after it abolished its unpopular 240-year-old monarchy last year.