Alliance calls off strike

KATHMANDU, Apr 8: Bowing down to pressure from serveral quarters, the UCPN (Maoist) led alliance of 30 political parties on Tuesday decided to call off its general strike planned for Wednesday and Thursday.

A meeting of the alliance convened at Singha Durbar shortly after announcing the end of strike at 5 pm on the first day of the three-day general strike made the decision to this effect. The alliance has decided to announced further protest programmes later.

UCPN (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal tabled the proposal to call of the strike. He had promised the representatives of various business organisations to put forth the proposal.

The opposition parties had called for a three-day general strike starting Tuesday to put pressure on the ruling parties to forge consensus on the disputed issues of new constitution.

Normal life across the nation was crippled due to the general strike enforced by the opposition alliance.

Earlier in the day, the UCPN (Maoist) led alliance was requested from several quarters to withdraw its protest programmes as the “general strike is against people’s interests”.

A team of Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Nepal Chamber of Commerce and Independent Energy Producers’ Association had called on Dahal at his residence earlier in the day and urged him to call off the strike. They drew Dahal’s attention towards a huge loss suffered by the private sector because of the strike.

Likewise, a group of retired bureaucrats, civil society members and professionals under the banner of G-25 urged the opposition alliance to call off their strike and even warned of counter protests if the shutdown was continued.

It has been learnt that Madhesi Janadhikar Forum-Nepal Chairman Upendra Yadav, Sadbhawana party Chairman Rajendra Mahato and Tarai Madhes Loktantrik Party Chairman Mahanta Thakur had opined that the pre-announced general strike should not be called off.