Nepal’s political majors agree to 8-province model

Kathmandu, June 8 (IANS) The four major political parties of Nepal on Monday agreed in principle to having a federal structure with eight provinces under a new constitution for the Himalayan nation.

After reaching a decision in this regard earlier in the day, the four major political parties in Nepal — the Nepali Congress, Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist), United Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and the Terai-based Madhesi Front — were scheduled to formalise the understanding in the evening at the Prime Minister’s Office, a leader who attended the morning meeting said.

Top leaders of the four parties met at Prime Minister Sushil Koirala’s official Baluwatar residence on Monday morning.

Nepal’s political parties have earlier failed to arrive at a consensus during lengthy discussions on six- and eight-state models.

The names of the proposed provinces/states and demarcation of inter-state border were yet to be finalised. A commission of experts was likely to be set up to finalise the names and boundaries of the proposed provinces, a leader present in the meeting said.

The meeting decided to assign the federal commission the authority to fix boundaries of the proposed provinces and the naming of the proposed provinces to the federal assembly.

Likewise, the four major political parties also reached agreement to adopt a mixed electoral system.

According to the agreement, 60 percent of the lawmakers would be elected directly through the first-past-the-post system, and the remaining 40 percent under the proportional electoral system.

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