Dispute in the ruling CPN deepens
Internal feud in the ruling Communist Party of Nepal (CPN) has spilled over when both the chairmen of the party were out of the country. When Prime Minister and party chair K. P. Sharma Oli was in New York to attend the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly and another chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal was in Singpore, senior leader and former Prime Minister Madahv Kumar Nepal opened fire against the party leadership by severely criticising the poor performance of the powerful communist government He challenged the leadership while addressing the parliament meeting as well as a function attended by senior party leaders. The intra-party disputes that surfaced after senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal vented his ire against the poor performance of the government has escalated further with the Prime Minister’s aides and junior leaders joining the mudslinging games. When PM’s press advisor Dr. Kundan Aryal and others tried to defend the remarks of the Prime Minister, leaders like Yogesh Bhattarai and Jagannath Khatiwada continued to criticise the government and the party leadership. The social sites are full of remarks made by the close aides of Prime Minister KP Oli and those close to leader Nepal, leading to further confrontation between the establishment and Nepal-led faction. Although both PM Oli and another chair Dahal tried to console Nepal by telephoning him, the row
has not been resolved. Party insiders say senior leader Nepal is angry with party chairman and Prime Minister Oli as the crucial decision to form the party's provincial committees and pick their in-charges was taken when Nepal was in Ghana to attend the Pan Africa Conference on Anti-imperialism and Capitalism. Nepal faction is also dissatisfied after the Oli faction deliberately bypassed the Nepal faction leaders from nominations in the name of electing all women chairpersons in the parliamentary committees. Yogesh Bhattarai and Ghanshyam Bhusal, who are seen close to the Nepal faction, were strong contenders for the heads of parliamentary committees. In the case of the nomination of Provincial Committee office bearers and their in-charges, chairmen duo Oli and Pushpa Kamal Dahal had taken the decision against the previous understanding reached among top leaders to take the decision through a Standing Committee meeting. Although Oli had reportedly promised to Nepal to wait until he returned home and accommodate as many leaders as possible from his faction, chairman Oli faltered the promise. While many lauded Nepal's criticism against the government, a section of leaders within the ruling NCP took this as something “unwarranted.” Nepal's move to call the party's Standing Committee meeting on the next day to discuss the dismal performance of the government further incited tension between the two factions. Leaders close to Nepal, including senior leader Bam Dev Gautam had attended the meeting. While Prime Minister Oli criticised Nepal in New York stating that he was there to bail the country out of problems, his chief adviser Bishnu Rimal tweeted alleging that senior leader Nepal and his close aides were conspiring against the government in collusion with some foreigners. “The downfall of people starts right when they start taking suggestions from others to fail their own,” read Rimal’s tweet. Yogesh Bhattarai was quick to hit Rimal back saying that those who are in power always tend to see conspiracy. When the leaders of two sides continued to vet ire against each other, different conspiracy theories have been bred, which one can read in social sites as well as media outlets.