Nepal Today

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Another Maoist pressure on PM Koirala

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 May: Maoists have put another pressure on Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala asking his cabinet not to make substantive decisions that will have far-reaching ‘economic and administrative’ impacts, Maoists said.
Five Maoist ministers Wednesday submitted the request to Koirala as Maoists revealed a special cabinet committee is meeting to take such decisions.
Five ministers collectively in a letter to Koirala claimed the present government is only a caretaker.
Maoists have laid a claim to form a government as the largest party in the 601-member CA while rival parties have asked it to prove a two-third majority in the assembly for Koirala to hand-over government.
A hung parliament emerged after the election.
Meanwhile, three other parties are attempting to forge a coalition against Maoists by demanding an amendment in the constitution with a provision to share power by appointing a ceremonial president for which there is no provision in the constitution.
The parties are demanding an amendment to the constitution to appoint a president to which Girija Prasad Koirala is staking a claim with powers Maoists don’t want to share.
Congress, CPN-UML and MJF have also agreed the constitution should be amended to remove any government through a simple majority replacing a present provision that requires a two-third vote.
Maoists have rejected the proposal; a post-election government hasn’t been formed more than six weeks after the 10 April vote.
Congress leader Sher Bahadur Deuba Wednesday ruled out working with Maoists until seven party demands are met, including amendment to the constitution and dissolution of the PLA and YCL.
The party abandoned the pre-condition for return of seized assets before going for polls and the government led by the party turned a blind eye to Maoist excesses during two years after the Maoist joined the mainstream.
“Coordination is totally out until our demands are met,” former Prime Minister Deuba said in Pokhara.

Security around palace enhanced as preparations afoot to declare republic

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 May: A five-tiered security is being slapped around the palace at its special request as preparations are afoot to declare a republic through the first CA meeting Wednesday, Ishwar Raj Kafle reports in Nepal Samacharpatra.
Two rings will be deployed inside the palace and three outside, a source said.
. “Security is being deployed to prevent destruction of property. Bhiarabnath Battalion commando unit will be deployed,” a palace source said.
Palace officials have been ordered not to move around freely.
Meanwhile, the King is moving to Nagarjung Thursday published reports said.
CA is assembling Wednesday.
The same day, Nepal Students’ Union, a student wing of the Nepali Congress, has called another Valley strike to protest the Maoist murder of businessman Ram Hari Shresstha.
Maoists also assembling people in the Valley to press the King to leave the palace and celebrate the declaration of a republic.

Anti-Maoist coalition being forged

Kathmandu, 22 May: Four biggest parties in the CA after the Maoists are attempting to forge a coalition to foil an attempt by the CPN (Maoist) to form a government.
No party has been able to form a post-election government with a hung parliament after the 10 April vote.
Congress, CPN-UML and MJF leaders agreed Wednesday to amendment the constitution to appoint a ceremonial president of which Girija Prasad Koirala is the leading contender.
The powers of the presidency are also being discussed.
The three parties also agreed to amend the constitution amid Maoist opposition to topple a government with a simple instead of a two-third majority under the present provision.
If implemented, a Maoist government can be toppled anytime by its rivals bring assembled.
Congress, CPN-UML and MJF leaders are currently meeting with YML to forge such an alliance with agreement on to amend the constitution and appoint a ceremonial president.
Maoists, the largest party in CA, said it won’t share powers between a president and prime minister.

Maoist to investigate businessman’s murder

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 May: Under intense pressure from rival parties and angry sections of society, Maoists formed their own inquiry committee to satisfy opposition and critics Thursday.
A three-member committee headed by top leader Post Bahadur Bogati was formed amidst assurances the guilty would be booked.
Earlier Friday, Chairman Prachanda held discussions with irate family members and assured cooperation in investigation.
Protestors are gheraoing Singha Durbar Thursday to investigate the Ram Kazi Shrestha and action against culprits.
Meanwhile UNMIN which has also come under fire held discussions Thursday with Maoists and Nepal Army at a meeting of the tripartite committee.
The UNMIN was expected to present its own report on the murder and torture within a cantonment in Chitwan under its surveillance.

India lifts ban

Kathmandu, 22 May: India has lifted a ban of the export of cement and clinker to Nepal.
The ban create shortages hiking up price while project implementation has suffered.
Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood is conveying the decision to the Indian government to Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala at a decision Thursday.

Five women of all-inclusive Nepali women team scale Everest

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 May: Five Nepali women of an all-women’s team with representatives of all ethnic groups scaled the 8848 meters high Mount Everest Thursday.
Five other women members are attempting to set foot on the world’s highest point Friday and Saturday.
Suhmita Maskey, Maya Gurung, Nawang Futi Sherpa, Pemba Sherpa and Pujana Achara climbed the peak.
The successful climbers were from the Newar, Gurung, Brahmin and Sherpa community.
Twenty-seven climbers first climbed the peak from Nepal Wednesday after it was opened to 31 teams when Chinese took an Olympic torch to the top from Tibet earlier this month.

Maoists to formally claim govt.

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 May: Maoist central committee Thursday decided to formally stake a claim to form a government following its emergence as the largest party in the 60-1 member CA but without a majority.
Maoists had only claimed the government through public speeches.
Maoist have already decided join government by heading a coalition lead of other parties.
The five-member present team was to be replaced.
Prachanda is the head of the Maoist government team and the second man in Mohan Baidya ‘Kiran’ who is ranked above Dr Baburam Bhattarai who is placed third in ahead of Ram Bahadur Thapa ‘Badal and CP Gajurel.
The formal decision means that the CPN (Maoist) will have to formally ask the government of Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala to resign.
Five Maoist ministers Wednesday told Koirala Wednesday his government is only a caretaker government and asked it not to take any major decisions.
Other rival parties won’t concede to Maoist demand and will instead be asked to prove a two-third majority to form a government.
No party has a majority to form a government following a hung parliament.

Another Jetstream 41 joins Yeti fleet

Kathmandu, 22 May: The sixth 30-seat Jetstream 41 joined the Yeti Airlines fleet Wednesday.
The airline also has five 19-seater DNC6-300 Twin Otters.
The airline started operation in 1998.

Nepali general to head UN Sudan force in

Kathmandu, 22 May: Maj Gen Pawan Jung Thapa will head the UN Mission in Sudan.
He flew for Sudan Wednesday to take over responsibilities as head of a 10,000 strong force from 10 nations.


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