Campaign in Madhes to dispel ‘anti-UML feeling’The main opposition CPN-UML is preparing to launch a special campaign in the Tarai to dispel the “anti-UML sentiment” persisting among the Madhesi people.
The main opposition CPN-UML is preparing to launch a special campaign in the Tarai to dispel the “anti-UML sentiment” persisting among the Madhesi people.
Discussions for the party’s Madhes campaign began after UML leader Shankar Pokhrel’s racist comment became viral on social media to the extent of worsening the prevailing conception among many Madhesis that the UML was responsible for the troubled relations between the Madhes and the political establishment in Kathmandu.
The Sanghiya Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha supported CPN (Maoist Centre) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal in toppling the government led by UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli after Oli refused to heed their demands for another constitutional amendment.
Justifying his move to topple the Oli-led government in which Dahal’s Maoist party was a coalition partner, PM Dahal has claimed repeatedly that Oli fuelled the widening of the rift between the people in the hills and the plains.
After the second largest party realised that there was popular belief among the Madhesis and Janajatis that the UML was against their issues, the Standing Committee had proposed the special campaign to clear the misunderstanding with the Madhesi people.
Party Secretary Pradeep Gyawali said there was confusion among the people in Madhes about the UML’s stances due to a communication gap. The UML will conduct a door-to-door campaign and hold interactions at several places in the Tarai besides organising mass meetings in city areas.
The Central Committee meeting of the party scheduled for September 21-23 will spell out the campaign modality. Booklets would be distributed across the Tarai highlighting the efforts, activities and development works initiated by the Oli government. The party is preparing to organise the campaign in 21 districts but would focus more on Province 2.
Of the 119 Tarai constituencies in the second Constituent Assembly elections, the Nepali Congress won 54, the UML came victorious in 37, the Maoist Centre won 12 while the Madhesi parties got 12 constituencies.
The UML is also planning to raise the issue of rampant social discrimination among the Tarai residents at a time when the problem is less severe in the Hills. “Since the politics of the Tarai is in the grip of elites, internal issues have not been resolved yet,” said Gyawali.