Scene shifts to house

People's Review - - FRONT PAGE - By Our Re­porter

Why Prime Min­is­ter Sher Ba­hadur Deuba should have told the me­dia that his pur­suit of a two thirds ma­jor­ity in the ex­ec­u­tive par­lia­ment for con­sti­tu­tional amend­ment con­tin­ues to in­cur the wrath of nit­pick­ers should per­haps be ex­plained in yet an­other ex­pan­sion of his al­ready bloated coun­cil of min­is­ters. This round he is bound to prey on the sre­cently splin­tered RPP led by old hand Pashu­pati Shumshere who has emerged fresh from the le­git­i­macy pro­vided by the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion and Supreme Court de­ci­sion to rec­og­nize his group as a sep­a­rate party in par­lia­ment as dis­tinct from that led by Ka­mal Thapa. As ru­mor would have it, eight new faces will be added to the min­is­te­rial ranks and the vo­cif­er­ous crit­i­cism em­a­nat­ing from the Thapa quar­ters since the splin­ter car­ries mean­ing es­pe­cially when it cen­ters around gov­ern­ment's role in en­gi­neer­ing the split. The loser clearly is Thapa and his frag­mented party since, as ru­mored, Deuba was not will­ing to ad­mit yet an­other deputy prime min­is­ter in his swelling cab­i­net and, per­haps more im­por­tantly, since the ad­di­tion of num­bers from his quar­ters would make his stand­point on amend­ments un­cer­tain still. The first fis­sures in a newly con­sol­i­dated RPP came about when Dr. Prakash Chan­dra Lo­hani chose to ques­tion Thapa's style of lead­er­ship. Lo­hani, who heads an­other RPP party still is said to fa­vor an ag­i­ta­tion for po­lit­i­cal change but is likely to lose sup­port­ers from among the par­lia­men­tary mem­bers eye­ing him since all three RPPs have sim­i­lar stand­points on the con­sti­tu­tion. An eye opener on the trends to ex­pect from the RPP, how­ever, may be clued in the fact that, if the Thapa sec­tion voted against the amend­ment in par­lia­ment last week, the rest of the RPP just were not present for the vote. It is thought that this ab­sent body largely in­cluded whole and sole in the party led by Pashu­pati will be de­ci­sive in the RPP in the days to come when par­lia­ment will be the fo­cus of pol­i­tics un­til Deuba chooses to dis­solve it. As it stands, when scene shifts to elec­tions or when hol­i­day sea­son comes, busi­ness in par­lia­ment will re­main dor­mant enough to suit Deuba.

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