KATHMANDU Nepals four major parties have reached a landmark deal to divide the country into six provinces, each sharing its border with India, resolving contentious issues of federalism under the new constitution, a crucial development praised by PM Sushil Koirala.
Following a marathon meeting, the Constitutional Political Dialogue and Consensus Committee (CPDCC) of the constituent assembly finally inked an agreement at midnight to carve out the six federal units.
The four major parties also agreed to incorporate in the citizenship clause the provision of allowing children to acquire citizenship certificate in the name of either father or mother, according to deputy prime minister and minister for local development and federal affairs Prakash Man Singh.
Koirala and top leaders of CPN UML, Nepali Congress, Unified CPN Maoist and Madhesi Peoples Rights Forum Democratic (MPRFD) were present during the meeting. However, UCPN Maoist and MPRFD, have signed the deal with some reservations.
Dividing the state was one of the thorny issues of the new constitution. With signing of the agreement among the major parties on the issue of federal model, the constitution drafting has reached its final phase. Although the political parties have agreed on numbers and boundaries of the federal units, they have yet to agree on the names of the federal units which will be decided later on.
In the agreed model of federal structure, all the six provinces have direct access with Indian border.
Kathmandu, the capital district, lies in province number 2 and except this, all other provinces have three geographical divisions, mountain region, hilly region and southern plains.