NEW DELHI: Chinese Ambassador to Nepal Hou Yanqi has yet again launched frantic efforts to prevent a split in the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) as the rift between the two factions widened — despite her earlier efforts — threatening to dislodge South Asia’s only national communist government.

Yanqi is holding closed door meetings with rival factions of NCP, one led by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, and another by former prime minister Prachanda. On Tuesday Prachanda, the former guerrilla leader, went ahead and held NCP’s Standing Committee meeting in the absence of Oli.

Earlier, Yanqi brokered a temporary truce between these two leaders until cracks resurfaced recently. The envoy is reportedly in close touch with the Nepal Army chief and local NGOs, youth forums and trade organisations to prevent the communist regime from losing power, Kathmandu based sources told ET.

The Chinese envoy is silent on her Twitter and Facebook accounts but remains active in the political circles of Kathmandu, sources claimed. The envoy, who is an old Pakistan hand, is reportedly holding meetings with top leaders of NCP to prevent the ruling party from an inevitable split as Oli seems reluctant to make truce with Prachanda.

Nepalese media have recently reported that Oli is keen to float a new party. One of Oli's close aides has filed an application with the Election Commission to register a new party. A split in NCP will dent the Left unity in the Himalayan state.

On his part, Prachanda feels that Oli's behaviour has created chaos in the party cadre and he (Oli) should step down from the PM's chair or from the co-chairmanship of NCP.

Earlier, Yanqi had met senior NCP leader Jhalanath Khanal twice in a week. The Chinese envoy held talks with former prime minister Khanal for around 45 minutes at the latter's residence in Swayambhu in Kathmandu, sources from Kathmandu said.

The Chinese envoy also held a few meetings with senior party leader Madhav Kumar Nepal last week. Besides serving in Pakistan, Yanqi was holding a key responsibility in the department of Asian affairs in China's foreign ministry.

However, sections of the Nepalese Foreign Ministry are upset the Chinese envoy is violating diplomatic norms and engaging in local politics, ET has learnt.