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First draft of Nepal's new Constitution to be ready by Jan: Sher Bahadur Deuba

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Kathmandu (Oct 5, 2014): The first draft of Nepal's new Constitution will be ready by the January 22 deadline, former Prime Minister and senior Nepali Congress leader Sher Bahadur Deuba has said.

Deuba assured the Nepali community living in the UK that the drafting of the new Constitution will be completed within the stipulated time, party sources here said.

Deuba was speaking at a programme organised at Nepali embassy in London yesterday.

"There is no disagreement about completing the first draft of the new Constitution in time as the parties have reached consensus on key contentious issues except federalism," said Deuba.

He claimed that parties involved with the draft process have agreed to provide special citizenship to non-residential Nepalis (NRN) but conceded there have been complications over providing political rights.

"There would be confusion among the person assuming the political posts as to which country to give priority," he said.

The Nepali Congress leader said that his party is resolute on its views that former Gurkha soldiers be given pension and other benefits on par with their British counterparts.

Political parties, which pledged during the second Constituent Assembly elections, have set January 22 as deadline to draft the Constitution so as to institutionalise the achievements of the Peoples Movement of 2006.

Political instability has plagued Nepal since the end of the civil war in 2006.

Politicians have yet to agree on a new Constitution - a key part of the peace deal with the Maoists - and are at odds over proposals to divide Nepal into states, along ethnic lines.