KATHMANDU: Speculations that the Janata Samajbadi Party (JSP) will undergo a split are likely to turn into a reality as the intra-party wrangling has touched a new high raising a storm that continues to rage within the party.
The faction led by party Chairman Dr. Babu Ram Bhattarai has been showing disenchantment alleging another party Chairman Upendra Yadav for using his discretionary power rather than abiding by the party statute.
This became evident as Dr. Bhattarai met Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and proposed an amendment to the existing party split provision.
Earlier, PM Deuba had issued an ordinance targeting the CPN-UML that led to the party split to form the Unified Socialist Party led by Madhav Kumar Nepal.
Likewise, the JSP also split to form Loktantrik Samajwadi Party (LSP).
Party Chairman Yadav, meanwhile, is busy in internal discussions to deal with the current intra-party conflict assuring the leaders that he would work towards strengthening the party.
Yadav has been making excuses and has remained busy with the strategy of delaying and pushing Dr. Bhattarai and his aides to the wall rather than implementing the past decisions of the party.
He had even promised to recall the party ministers in the Sher Bahadur Deuba-led government after six months to give chances to other leaders of his party because of which over a dozen lawmakers are disenchanted with him for not implementing his commitment.
“If this continues, there is no meaning to remain in the party,” a disgruntled leader close to Dr. Bhattarai said.
In order to prevent a possible rift, Chairman Yadav has played the card of unity with the Loktantrik Samajbadi Party (LSP).
However, LSP leaders Mahanta Thakur, Rajendra Mahato, Sarat Singh Bhandari and Anil Jha are “not in a position to be caught in Upendra’s chaff this time”, a leader said.
Even before the local-level election, the Bhattarai-led faction was not in favor of forging an electoral alliance in the local-level elections while the Upendra-led faction was in favor of an electoral alliance with the other four ruling parties.
Meanwhile, with the rift within the JSP escalating further, even Chairman of the ruling Maoist Center Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda” has hinted at forming a new equation within the ruling coalition.
Even though Bhattarai enjoys the support of the majority of the party’s 34-member executive committee and the parliamentary party, he does not have the support of 40 percent of the central committee members.
Party leaders and ministers Mahindra Raya Yadav, Rajendra Shrestha, Renu Yadav, Ram Naresh Yadav, Manish Suman, Nawal Kishor Sah, Govinda Chaudhary and others are in favor of Yadav.
Likewise, leaders, including Asok Rai, Rajkishore Yadav, Amrita Agrahari, Ishtiaq Rai, Pradip Yadav, Renuka Gurung, Hemraj Rai, Rakam Chemjong, Hisila Yami and Ganga Shrestha are on Bhattarai’s side.