The Nepali Congress and the CPN-UML, the first and the second largest parties, respectively, in the Constituent Assembly cum Legislature-Parliament, are making efforts for a package deal on a host of issues including constitution writing and power-sharing.
The leaders of the two parties have been working towards forging a consensus after the schedule for the election to the post of Prime Minister has been set for February 10.
In this connection, Dip Kumar Upadhyay, a member of the NC’s talks team, met with UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal on Saturday and held talks on how the two parties could clinch a package deal.
After his meeting with NC's Upadhyay, Khanal told journalists that he was confident the two parties would reach a package deal by the Saturday evening. He said the parties would pursue bilateral talks and try to reach a deal.
The NC and UML are said to have paced closer to allocation of the government ministry portfolios. However, they are still apart on issues such as the election of the President and the Vice President and sharing the posts of the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker among them.
NC has called for holding the election of the President only after issuing a constitution within a year while the UML wants the Constituent Assembly formed after the new elections to elect a new President as per the democratic practice.
The Nepali Congress has decided to field its president and parliamentary party leader Sushil Koirala in the election for the Prime Minister. The Parliament Secretariat has fixed Saturday and Sunday as the dates for filing the candidacy.