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At the end of November Nepal’s political parties marked the fourth anniversary of the end of the civil war with an undignified scuffle in parliament and continued political deadlock.
Just days before the anniversary of the signing of the comprehensive peace accord which brought Maoist guerrilla leaders into parliament, Maoist MPs physically blocked the caretaker finance minister in the parliament building and seized a briefcase containing his proposed budget.
An interim budget ran out on 15 November, and some new law was required to keep government functioning and civil servants being paid. The current government resigned in June, and the Maoists insist that an interim budget from a caretaker government should be minimal, without any new government policies.
The Maoists claim that the proposed budget violated an all-party agreement earlier this month that there would be no new spending; they also objected to the fast-track procedure used by the government to bypass parliament.
Hence the tussle in parliament, which the Maoist leader Prachanda described as unfortunate, but a normal part of parliamentary practice in democratic countries.
There has been no significant progress on integrating Maoist guerrillas into the Nepali security forces or on drafting a new constitution (two key elements of the comprehensive peace accord).