Nepal Today

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

PM Prachanda begins Finland visit Wednesday

Kathmandu, 1 April: Prime Minister Prachanda begins an official visit of Finland Wednesday.
He begins his Finland visit after concluding a four-day Norway visit.

Foreign minister Upendra Yadav visiting China

Kathmandu, 1 April: Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav begins a China visit 4 April, China’s foreign ministry said.
He will be in China from 4 to 10 April to prepare PM Prachanda’s visit.
Nepal and China may sign a peace agreement during the visit.
Yadav is also visiting North Korea after concluding his China visit.

Maoists capture Kirtipur campus

Kathmandu, 1 April: Himal Sharma of Maoist- affiliated student union caamtured election of the Kirtipur TU Campus.
Delayed results were announced Tuesday.
CPN-UML affiliated union won elections in Ratna Rajya Laxmi and Law campus in the capital while Nepali Congress affiliated union swept elections in Padma Kanya campus.
Nation-wide, CPN-UML affiliated unions swept free student union elections.

China to release Nepali detainees

Kathmandu, 1 April: China will release two dozen Nepali prisoners from jails before Prime Minister Prachanda’s China visit, Kantipur reports.
Home ministry has submitted details of prisoners to China.

Paras wants to enter politics

Kathmandu, 1 April: Former Crown Prince currently living in
Singapore told The New Paper of the island nation Tuesday he intends to enter politics after returning home.
Excerpts of the interview:
“I left Kathmandu because it was not safe then for me. I did not get along with my father at that time.
“I plan to return to my country. It needs me. Crime and violence have spiraled. There are all kinds of shortages—petrol, diesel, kerosene and gas. The people are hungry. They are lucky if they have four hours of electricity daily because of power cuts.
“But I will assume power this time through the ballot. I will form a new party with young people—bankers, professionals, men with vision for the country. But really, all this can only come to pass if the people want me, “Paras said.

Accusation against US embassy

Kathmandu, 1 April: Relatives of a youth, who was hit by a vehicle belonging to the US embassy on March 9, have accused the embassy and its employees of acting ‘irresponsibly’ towards the victim, The Himalayan Times reports.
Sunny Nakarmi was seriously injured when his motorbike was hit by a vehicle driven by Jennifer L Kar, an employee at the US embassy, at around 9 pm on March 9,near Jaya Nepal Cinema.


Growth rate at only 3.5 percent: ADB

Kathmandu, 1 April: Asian Development Bank (ADB)
has projected a growth rate of 3.5 percent and inflation at eight percent for Nepal in 2010.
“Short-term challenges for Nepal are not as bleak as perceived for the region,” said the bank’s senior country specialist in Nepal Paolo Spantigati while releasing the Asian development Outlook 2009 Tuesday.


“Nepal has accepted Dago Tshering as ambassador[of Bhutan]. He shot Nepali-speaking people. A person who put in a sack is now ambassador.”

(Bhutanese pro-democracy leader Teknath Rijal, Naya P, 1 April)

“Independence of the judiciary is now under fire. Because of weak security, free judgment can’t be given. The state hasn’t considere3d keeping the judiciary independent.”

(Chief justice Kedar Prasad Giri, Naya Patrika, 1 April)

‘The tradition of visiting Delhi seeking help during political change has increased foreign intervention in national affairs.”

(Dr Baburam Bhatarai, The Kathmandu Post, 1 April)

Capital receives rain for third successive day

Kathmandu, 31 March: To the relief of residents, the capital received rainfall Tuesday evening for the third successive day.
The capital and the rest of the country have suffered a five-month dry spell.

US Ambassador Powell in Mustang

Kathmandu, 31 March: UN Ambassador Nancy J. Powell Tuesday visited Mustang on the Nepal-Tibet border.
She held discussions with the then raja of the district across the Himalaya at a time when China has closed the Nepal-Tibet border on the 50th anniversary of the crushing of the rebellion by Tibetans by China.
Police in the capital Tuesday broke up a protest demonstration by Tibetan refugees in front of the Chinese embassy.
Vehicular movement was disturbed.

Norwegian Minister admits keeping contact with terrorist Maoists (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 31 March: Norwegian Minister for International Development Erik Solheim has admitted keeping contact with declared terrorists while maintaining relations at the state level with a constitutional government in Nepal.
‘It’s a great pleasure for me to receive Prachanda here as Nepal’s elected PM,” Solheim said, adding that he used to call him via cell phone when Prachanda was hiding in jungle,” Arjun Bhandari reported in The Himalayan Times from Oslo.
Prime Minister Prachanda is currently on an official state visit of Norway ruled by a lest-wing government.
Solheim is a frequent visitor to Nepal.
The Norwegian minister didn’t identify the ‘jungle’ or when he established direct contact with Maoists declared terrorists by Nepal, India and USA.
Was it the urban jungle of India or Nepal’s forests?
Perhaps Solheim could provide an answer.
Prachanda said he spent eight of 10 years of the people’s war in India.
Earlier reports said even a senior UN official sent to Nepal as a representative met Maoists in the outskirts of New Delhi.
Nepali residents have said Prachanda and Dr Baburam Bhattarai used to live in a rented apartment in Noida in the outskirts of New Delhi where in the Indian capital they maintained an office at Jawaharlal Nehru University named after India’s first prime minister.
The admission is a revelation Norway was promoting communists and the Maoist movement in Nepal.
Then Ambassador of Norway to Nepal during the insurgency threatened to cut off aid if Nepal didn’t negotiate with Maoists.
Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee, to the disgust of Maoists,
admitted the general perception India brokered the 12-point New
Delhi peace agreement in 2006 that ultimately brought Maoists to power in Nepal.
Solheim made the admission even as the small inconsequential Scandinavian monarchical state attempts to play a failed big role in international affairs,
Its attempts to broker peace in Israel, Sri Lanka and Nepal have failed.
The peace process in Nepal is in jeopardy.
Prachanda begins a visit of Finland Wednesday.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Britain encourages parties to work for constitution

By Bhola Rana

Kathmandu, 31 March: British Minister for International Development Mike Foster Tuesday encouraged parties to work for drafting a new constitution.
He arrived for a second visit in fourmonths.
“I encourage all parties concerned to continue to work together to create a new constitution, and deliver peace and development to the people.
“The UK is committed to working with the government,” he said in an arrival statement,.
He is releasing a Nepal Development Strategy in the run up to Nepal Development Forum Meeting in May.
He said he will also launch new Nepal Country Plan for the next three years, from April 2009 to March 2012 designed to support Nepal’s efforts to achieve peace and development.


Nepal, Norway sign agreement

Kathmandu, 31 March: Nepal and Norway signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) Monday in Oslo to promote peace, hydro power development and education.
The MOU was signed on the second day of PM Prachanda’s Norway visit.
Norway will invest in the hydro power sector in Nepal.
Prachanda met with King Harald Monday.
The prime minister begins a visit of Finland Wednesday.

Madhav Kumar Nepal appointed senior CPN-UML leader

Kathmandu, 31 March: Madhav Kumar Nepal has been appointed senior CPN-UML leader by the party’s central committee Monday.
The committee appointed Chairman Jhalanath Khanal, Nepal, KP Sharma Oli, Ashok Rai, Bamdeb Gautam, Bidya Bhandari, Bishnu Paudel, Ishwor Pokhrel, Shanker Pokhrel, Yubaraj Geywali and Amrit Bohara to the standing committee.
The central committee meeting that began 25 March ended Monday.

British Minister for International Development arrives

Kathmandu, 31 March: Britain’s Minister for International Development Mike Foster arrived Tuesday for a three-day visit to launch his country’s country plan for Nepal.
The plan is being launched Thursday.
He will inspect a Maoist cantonment in Kailali.

Valley received rainfall for second consecutive day

Kathmandu, 31 March: To the relief of residents, the Valley received rain for the second consecutive day Monday.
The five-month dry spell was broken Sunday.
Plants died and water had been rationed.

Govt. invokes essential service act

Kathmandu, 31 March: Government has invoked an essential
service act banning strike in import, transport and distribution sectors of petroleum products.
Government has also decided to purchase oil tankers.
Petroleum dealers and importers went on a strike creating a shortage after government decided to ban old tankers.

Justices begin meeting

Kathmandu, 31 March: Justices of the supreme and other courts began a two-day meet in the capital Tuesday.
The meeting is expected to pass a resolution on protection of interestsof judiciary.
The justices are meeting at a time when the supreme court has come under Maoist attack for a decision to reinstate eight brigadiers whose
services were terminated by the defence ministry.
Dr Baburm Bhattarai has demanded justices should be elected,

RPP- Nepal roots for monarchy

Kathmandu, 31 March: RPP-Nepal Tuesday submitted a proposal to the constitution drafting committee for monarchy and a Hindu state.
The proposal was submitted by party chairman Kamal Thapa.
The party said monarchy should be an institution for national unity.
Nepali Congress also submitted a proposal for a parliamentary
system of government.
Maoists have proposed a presidential system of government.

Nepali workers going to carry pickle with hemp

Kathmandu, 31 March: Nepali embassy in UAE has asked Nepalis traveling to the gulf not to carry with them pickle with bhang [hemp].
The embassy issued the request after two Nepalis were arrested with such pickle.
UAE bans products laced with narcotics.

Nepali student dies in USA

Kathmandu, 31 March: Nepali student Rahul Hamal,23, died Froday while undergoing treatment at a hospital in New Jersey, the Nepali community in USA announced.
The community has asked for donations to return Hamal’s body home

Name of ambassador designate to France doesn’t tally

Kathmandu, 31 March: A controversy has surfaced after the appointment of Ram Karki as ambassador to France, Annapurna Post reports.
In a CV to the foreign ministry, Karki has said his is Surendra
Foreign ministry is preparing to ask the cabinet to change the

Bamdeb Gautam starts recruitment in intelligence department

Kathmandu, 31 March: Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam has started a recruitment drive in the national investigation department, Kantipur reports.
He has started to recruit people of his choice against the recommendation of a high-level task force.
Gautam himself had proposed to modernize security agencies.
Thirty-seven persons have been appointed without competition.

Details of seized assets sought

Kathmandu, 31 March: Nepali Congress has appointed
Balkrishna Khad coordinator of a committee to seek details of assets seized by Maoists.
Government hasn’t provided details demanded by a parliamentary committee.
The home ministry Friday again sought details from districts.


“Congress isn’t considering joining government.”

(Girija Prasad Koirala, Annapurna Post, 31 March)

“This development [Maoist criticism of judiciary] is very unfortunate. The judiciary should not figure in street protests. I condemn the burning of effigies of justices.”

(Attorney General Raghav Lal Vaidya, The HimalayanTimes, 31 March)

“Maoists do not have the right to dishonour the supremacy of the judiciary”

(Former Nepal Bar Association President Sambhu Thapa, The Himalayan Times, 31 March)

‘There’s no alternative to this government.”

(Minister Ganesh Shah, Annapurna Post, 31 March)

“This flower pot is also against a republic. Ouch! It hurts”

“Cartoon in Kantipur, Dr Baburam Bhattarai after his leg accidentally hit a flower pot, 31 March)

Correction (URGENT}

Kathmandu, 30March: Please read Maoists toppled monarchy instead of pushed monarchy in Cown Prince Paras story.
Sorry for the error.

Former Crown Prince Paras says Dipendra opposed deal to purchase US M16 rifles (Excerpts from interview with Singapore newspaper) BREAKING NEWS

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 March: Then Crown Prince Dipendra killed his father King Birendra and other members of the family as he opposed a deal to purchase 50,000 US-manufactures M16 rifles.
Dipendra killed himself after mowing down his entire family on 1 June 2001 in a royal palace massacre.
Cousin and Crown Paras, son of ousted King Gyanendra, revealed this in an interview with Singapore newspaper.
“Nepal Army was looking for a new weapon to replace the Belgian SLR. Dipendra liked the German Heckler & Koch G36 assault rifle, as opposed to the battle-tested Cold M16.
“But His Majesty [Birendra], did not agree over it. He wasn’t happy. He told me,” The Kathmandu Post reported quoting Paras in the Sunday edition of Singapore’s The New paper.
Paras currently lives in Singapore.
The German assault rifle has been short-listed by the army, which was in the market for 50,000 new guns.
“That, to me, was the real trigger. The deal would have probably been for about 50,000 rifles, which at US $300 a piece, would work out to about US$ 15 million,” Paras said
Nepal Army finally purchased US rifles in the first Bush administration.
Bush told them visiting Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to ‘search, find and kill Maoists” as Washington trained a rangers battalion.
But Bush stopped all military aid to Nepal in his second term after the royal takeover; Maoists ultimately were elected to power.
Left-wing government in Belgium cancelled a deal to supply rifles to Royal Nepal Army after King Gyanendra imposed royal rule.
“The palace was a hotbed of contending interests.
“Dipendra was never the same after his father told him in 1990 [when panchayat was overthrown] about a plans to give up monarchy. He never agreed with that as he wanted to rule the country. I think he started planning his moves then.
‘I remember it clearly. It was his birthday in 2000 and he told all of us that he would bring down the ‘ivory tower’. But we [younger royals] didn’t take him seriously. How could we?
“This was the crown prince talking. He was going to be our king. And who would believe that he would kill his own father.”
Paras said Dipendra gunned down his father.
The Maoist-led government has said it will investigate the palace massacre.
Prime Minister Prachanda said unconvincingly King Birendra was a popular king even as the party pushed monarchy.
Maoists first blamed India for Birendra’s massacre.
Published reports have said Maoists are trying to place blame on Gyanendra for his brother’s murder.

Supreme court again postpones hearing on reinstatement of brigadiers

Kathmandu, 30 March: A two-man bench of the supreme court Monday again postponed a hearing on a government appeal to reconsider an earlier apex decision to reinstate eight Nepal Army brigadier generals.
A decision was postponed Sunday as well.

Maoists, CPN-UML to form task force to investigate murder of student leader

Kathmandu, 30 March: Coalition communist partners CPN-UML and Maoists Monday agreed to constitute a task force to investigate the murder of a CPN-UML student leader in Butwal Thursday.
CPN-UML charged Maoists for the murder threatening to quit government.
The agreement to form the task force indicates CPN-UML demand is just a threat for public consumption.

President moves to Shital Niwas Friday

Kathmandu, 30 March: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav moves to Shital Niwas Friday, Tarun reports.
He’s currently living in Dhapasi.

Maoists use combatants in UNMIN camps as domestic servants

Kathmandu, 30 March: The use of lower level Nepal Army and police personnel as domestic servants has been scaled down after the declaration of a republic, Tarun reports.
But Maoists in government continue employing combatants in cantonments.
[Note: The report says senior Maoist ministers and leaders Hishila Yami,
CP Gajurel, Barsha Man Pun, Netra Bikran Chand and other leaders employ combatants as domestic servants paying them government salaries. The report claims at least 35 Maoist leaders are employing domestic servants even as Maoists say others are feudals.]


“CPN-UML is a eneuch.”

(Dr Baburam Bhattarai, Rajdhani, 30 March)

Sunday, March 29, 2009

PM Prachanda begins Norway visit

Kathmandu, 30 March: Prime Minister Prachanda began a three-day official and rescheduled visit of Norway Sunday.
Norway, a small Scandinavian country, has been maintaining more than usual interest in Nepal even as an insignificant EU state.
Norway, using its oil money, has been supporting a communist movement in Nepal.
The prime ministers of the two countries begin official talks Monday.
Prachanda begins an official visit of Finland Wednesday.
The Prime Minister Sunday held discussions with non-resident Nepalis in Denmark Sunday during a stopover in the Danish capital en route to Oslo. Nnnn

Nepal Govt. launches protest in Geneva against UN chief remarks (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 March: Nepal Government has lodged a protest against High Commissioner of UN High Commission for Human Rights Office Chief Nabanithan Pillay’s comparison of Nepal with Rwanda, Anil Giri reports in Annapurna Post.
Nepal’s Representative at the UN in Geneva Dinesh Bhattarai lodged the protest on order of Foreign Secretary Gyan Chandra Acharya.
She said during a Nepal visit 22 March,” I met the near ones of the victims of the conflict and their families. Their experiences were the same as the victims of the conflict in Rwanda.”
A foreign ministry official said,” It’s learnt she made such a comparison to extend the mandate of the Kathmandu office of OHCHR for another three years.”
Accepting the protest letter, Pillay said she didn’t compare Nepal with Rwanda, according to the foreign ministry.
Meanwhile, discussions are on-going to extend the mandate of the OHCHR.
“Homework has started to extend the mandate of OHCHR for a short period to upgrade the capability of the national Human Rights Commission,” the newspaper said.
The office will be downsized.
(Note: Pillay had sought a three-year extension of the mandate while pushing for a regional office as well. The mandate ends June. The Commission entered Nepal in 2005 as western countries defamed the national Human Rights Commission pushed by major western countries and UN. The controversial and highly political Commission has only been monitoring protest demonstrations in the capital and preparing regular reports on the human rights situation in Nepal. Western countries are pushing a regional office in Nepal to watch activities of Tibetan refugees in Nepal.)

Technical committee on integration seeks extension

Kathmandu, 30 March: A eight-member technical committee of integration of PLA and Nepal Army Sunday sought an extensionof its mandate.
The main special committee headed by PM Prachanda had directed it to complete work in three months.
It sought a six month extension saying work couldn’t be completed in three months.

Capital receives 16.7mm rainfall

Kathmandu, 30 March: To the relief of residents, the capital overnight recorded 16.7mm rainfall.
A five-month dry spell was broken.

Former defence secretry dead

Kathmandu, 30 March: Former defence secretary Mukunda Shumshere Thapa dies Saturday.
he was a diabetic.


“Regional and ethnic slogans are being raised in Nepal as well. This won’t reinforce democracy.”

(President Dr Ram Baran Yadav, Annapurna Post, 30 March)

“Though the legislative and executive bodies have been restructured as per democratic norms, the judiciary is yet to become democratic.”

(DR Baburam Bhattarai, The Himalayan Times, 30 March)

Winter session adjourned with minimum business

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 March: The first day of the winter session of parliament was adjourned with minimum business lasting not more than two minutes.
Chairman Subash Nemwang read out a letter of President Dr Ram Baran Yadav to the legislators.
Legislators mourned the death of two parliamentarians as well.
PM Prachanda flew for visits of Norway and Finland one day before the parliament was scheduled to meet drawing criticism from ruling and opposition parties.
Main opposition Nepali Congress is presenting itself aggressively in the legislature.
This could affect the future of the six-month Maoist-led government and the constitution drafting process as Maoists don’t have a majority to enforce a communist agenda.

Curfew renewed in Butwal

Kathmandu, 29 March: A curfew was renewed in Butwal Sunday noon.
CPN-UML is protesting what it called murder of its student activist
Thursday by coalition partner Maoists
threatening the future of the six-month government.

Capital receives good shower

Kathmandu, 29 March: To the delight of residents, the capital received a good shower after a five-month dry spell.
The people were thirsty and gardens had dried.
The rain was accompanied by lightning.
Frogs were married off to call for rain as women in villages
danced naked in traditional fashion.



“I don’t know details of the peace treaty submitted by China; I haven’t got the details.”

(Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav on treaty that he’ll discuss with China during a visit to China in April, Nepal newsmagazine, 29 March)

“Nepal Sadbhavana Party Chairman Rajendra Mahoto called another Madeshi party MJF an enemy of Madesh.”

(Rajdhani report, 29 March)

“Because honourable persons in the judiciary are an obstacle,
true republic hasn’t emerged in the country. Tike [ appointed justices
] are conspiring against the government. Justices now should be directly elected by the people.”

(Baburam Bhattarai, Naya Patrika, 29 March)

“The judiciary has been adversely affected by slogans against the decisionof the supreme court, allegations against supreme court justices and burning of their effigies.”

Nepal Bar Association Chairman Bishwakant Mainali, Naya Patrika, 29 March)

“The chairperson of NSP (Debi) and former Minister Shyam Prasad
Gupta said the present national army is not the army of the kink
but of people and it would be disastrous for the nation if the dignity of national army was underestimated.”

(RSS report, The Rising Nepal, 29 March)

Winter session adjourned with minimum business

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 March: The first day of the winter session of parliament was adjourned with minimum business lasting not more than two minutes.
Chairman Subash Nemwang read out a letter of President Dr Ram Baran Yadav to the legislators.
Legislators mourned the death of two parliamentarians as well.
PM Prachanda flew for visits of Norway and Finland one day before the parliament was scheduled to meet drawing criticism from ruling and opposition parties.
Main opposition Nepali Congress is presenting itself aggressively in the legislature.
This could affect the future of the six-month Maoist-led government and the constitution drafting process as Maoists don’t have a majority to enforce a communist agenda.

Curfew renewed in Butwal

Kathmandu, 29 March: A curfew was renewed in Butwal Sunday noon.
CPN-UML is protesting what it called murder of its student activist
Thursday by coalition partner Maoists
threatening the future of the six-month government.


“I don’t know details of the peace treaty submitted by China; I haven’t got the details.”

(Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav on treaty that he’ll discuss with China during a visit to China in April, Nepal newsmagazine, 29 March)

“Nepal Sadbhavana Party Chairman Rajendra Mahoto called another Madeshi party MJF an enemy of Madesh.”

(Rajdhani report, 29 March)

“Because honourable persons in the judiciary are an obstacle,
true republic hasn’t emerged in the country. Tike [ appointed justices
] are conspiring against the government. Justices now should be directly elected by the people.”

(Baburam Bhattarai, Naya Patrika, 29 March)

“The judiciary has been adversely affected by slogans against the decisionof the supreme court, allegations against supreme court justices and burning of their effigies.”

Nepal Bar Association Chairman Bishwakant Mainali, Naya Patrika, 29 March)

“The chairperson of NSP (Debi) and former Minister Shyam Prasad
Gupta said the present national army is not the army of the kink
but of people and it would be disastrous for the nation if the dignity of national army was underestimated.”

(RSS report, The Rising Nepal, 29 March)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

PM Prachanda begins Norway, Finland visits Sunday

Kathmandu, 29 March: Prime Minister Prachanda Sunday begins week-long official visits of Norway and Finland Sunday,
He will first arrive in Oslo after transiting through Bangkok where he was greeted on behalf of the Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejajiva Saturday, according to Radio Nepal.
Nepal and Norway will sign an economic cooperation agreement during the premier’s rescheduled visit.
Prachanda begins his Finland visit Wednesday.
To charges for traveling abroad when parliament meets for its winter session Sunday, Prachanda said five parties in government and main Nepali Congress and TMLP approved the visits of the Scandinavian countries.
The foreign visit is Prachanda’s fourth after assuming office six months ago having visited China, India and New York to address last September’s annual UN general assembly session.

Five injured in bomb blast

Kathmandu, 29 March: Five persons were injured in a powerful bomb blast overnight in Garuda bazzar, Rautahat.
Two persons are critical.
One person was injured Saturday in a stray bomb explosion in Sarlahi.

Parliament meets for winter session

Kathmandu, 29 March; Parliament meets for its winter session later Sunday amid charges by major parties in the government and opposition the Maoist-led government was trying to rule through ordinance.
The parties demanded government convene a parliamentary session.
Main opposition Nepali Congress and other political parties began consultations Sunday how to present themselves in the legislature.
Congress is expected to draw its serious attention against what was called interference in media, judiciary while adopting a critical position against the Maoist-led government at a politically critical time.
Congress will raise issues of YCL excesses and government effort to stop the extension of tenure of eight brigadiers of Nepal Army; the brigadiers have been reinstated by the supreme court where the decision has been challenged by government.
Three ordinances and 13 other bills are being presented by government.
Ordinances updating voters’ list, forced disappearance and inclusiveness in public services are being presented.
“The nation is in darkness. We will raise issue of implementing past agreements with Maoists,” Congress whip Shobakar Parajuli. said
He has Maoists were running away from responsibility to run parliament when the PM flew abroad Saturday on a foreign visit one day before the legislature was meeting.
“It is irresponsible. We have serious objections,” Parajuli said.

Curfew relaxed for six hours in Butwal

Kathmandu, 29 March: Curfew was relaxed for six hours from six in the morning Sunday in Butwal and adjoining areas.
The town is tense after CPN-UML charged Maoists for killing its student leader.
CPN-UML has threatened to withdraw from government if action isn’t taken against culprits.

Vote counting starts in Kirtipur campus

Kathmandu, 29 March: Vote counting suspended 21 March for student elections at the Kirtipur Campus started from six in the evening Saturday.
Maoist students had obstructed the counting even as they led in counting.
Maoist student leader Himal Sharma is leading in Kirtipur.
But overall, CPN-UML has swept the elections.

Dr Baburam Bhattarai launched tirade against army, judiciary

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 March: Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai told a public in Parbar Saturday the republic will be ambushed if Nepal Army and judiciary aren’t democratized.
Bhattarai leveled the charge immediately after the supreme court asked government to push the retirement of eight brigadier generals.
“W attempted to retire monarchist corrupt generals. But they secretly conspired, took the court into their hands for their reinstatement.
“Right now the judiciary is attempting to overturn whatever good decisions are being taken by government. It’s clear the judiciary is being politicized,” Bhattarai charged.
“The army and judiciary should also be democratized. There should be right to take action against corrupt. They only a republic will be institutionalized.”
“Those who don’t respect the judiciary cannot reinforce democracy,” Sher Bahadur Deuba told a public meeting in Mahendranagar Saturday. ‘Maoists are attempting to run the country through the barrel of a gun, khukri and terror instead of ruling through law.”
The Maoists have launched nation-wide protests against the supreme court and judges following its verdict on the extension of tenure of brigadiers.
CPN-UML acted similarly after 1990 when the supreme court overturned a decision of the Manmohan Adhikari government to dissolve parliament and hold mid-term polls.


ADB sacks managers [Excerpt]

Kathmandu, 29 March: Asian Development Bank, major donor of the Melamchi Project, has sacked General Manager Richard Austin and Financial Manager Kelvyn Palmer of Kathmandu Upatakya Khanepani Limited, the utility responsible for distributing drinking water in the Kathmandu Valley, The Himalayan Post reports.
Chairperson of KUKL Board of Directors Dhruba Bahadur Shrestha said they had written to ADB to oust the foreign officials, as they had failed to perform up to the mark.
Board members Rudra Gautam has been appointed the new GM. Gautam assumed office yesterday [Friday].
“Ausin frequently said he was not accountable to the board. He never presented us the reality of the body for the management of which he was responsible,” Shrestha said.” He failed to effect institutional reforms.”


“There’s intense pressure to extend the tenure of OHCHR. This is strong evidence of foreign pressure to run the country’s politics.”

(National Human Rights Commission member Dr KB Rokaya, Annapurna Post, 29 March)

Former king conspired against Maoists and republic in India: Prachanda

Kathmandu, 28 March: Former King Gyanendra conspired against Maoists and a republic, Prime Minister Prachanda told his party’s parliamentary party meeting before leaving for Norway and Finland.
The former king returned home Wednesday after a three-week private India visit.
He held discussions with Congress I President Sonia Gandhi and top main opposition BJP leaders.
Prachanda claimed he was visiting Norway and Finland with the understanding of Nepali Congress, TMLP and other parties in government.
He was countering criticism of the visit ahead of the winter session of parliament that begins Sunday.
Prachanda arrives in Oslo Sunday via Bangkok and ill begin his Finland visit 1 April.
The PM’s wife Sita and son Prakash are accompanying him.

Maoist, CPN UML activists clash in Butwal; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 March: Maoist and CPN-UML supporters clashed in Butwal Saturday during funeral procession of CPN-UML student leader Prachanda Thaiba during relaxed curfew hours.
CPN-UML charged Maoist youth leader Sujit BK for the shooting death Thursday denied by Maoist central secretariat meeting in the capital Saturday.
The party also asked government to investigate the shooting and punish culprits.
CPN-UML Jhalanath Khanal flew to Butwal Saturday to attend the funeral service along Tinau river along with other central leaders.
PM Prachanda told his party’s parliamentary party meeting CPN-UML leaders were attempting to incite crowds by paying a flying visit to Buutwal.
Maoists Saturday defied curfew order and held a demonstration in the
southwest Nepal town protesting Friday’s attack on Maoist facilities in the town.
Private property of several Maoist supporters were also attacked.
The Maoist demonstration was led by central leader Top Bahadur Rayamajhi.
Rayamajhi charged CPN-UML was conspiring against Maoists in government.
Khanal threatened to quit the Maoist-led government if action isn’t taken against culprits and charged killers were lodged in camps under UNMIN observation.
CPN-UML has earlier decided not to attend cabinet meetings as well.
The party took out a protest demonstration in the capital and other parts of the country Saturday.
PM Prachanda assured action by party and government against
Maoists decided to form an investigation committee even as claiming
Maoists weren’t involved.
CPN-UML central committee was suspended Saturday to participate in the Butwal funeral and protest meetings.

Retired security personnel protest

Kathmandu, 28 March: Army and police personnel retired during the maoist people’s war held demonstrations in several districts outside the capital Saturday demanding reinstatement.
Demonstrations were held in Sunsari in the east to Dang and Banke, Kailali, Kanchanpur and otherdistricts in the mid-west.
Several vehicles were attacked and traffic movement was disrupted.
Demand for reinstatement coincides with Maoist demands for
Integration of their combatants in Nepal Army.

Three dozen vehicles and one police van smashed

Kathmandu, 28 March: Residents across the border in Raxaul Saturday smashed three dozen Nepali vehicles and a Nepal Police van.
People in the Bihar town were protesting the killing of two Indian extornists in Birgunj this week claiming innocent people were killed.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Chinese gift for Nepal Police

Kathmandu, 28 March: Ambassador for China to Nepal Qui Guohong handed over on behalf of the Chinese government nine pick-up vans to Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam at his office today [Friday], RSS reports.
The vans were have been handed over for enhancing the capacity of Nepal Police.
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Qiu appreciated Nepal for providing security for the journey of the Olympic torch when it was carried to the top of Mount Everest prior to the start of the Beijing Olympics.
The Chinese ambassador said that China will also provide security equipment and gear worth 500,000 Yuan to Nepal Police for its capacity enhancement in the second week of April.
Ambassador Qui appreciated Nepal Police for its role in checking criminal activities along the Nepal-China border.

PM Prachanda leaving for Norway, Finland

Kathmandu, 28 March: Prime Minister Prachanda leaves Saturday for a rescheduled week-long official visits of Norway and Finland one day before parliament meets for its winter session.
He arrives in Oslo Sunday as head of a 12-member government team; a five-member business delegation is accompanying the premier.
Nepal and Norway are signing an economic cooperation agreement during the visit.
The premier asked parties not to make his foreign visit an issue in parliament.
He returns home 4 April.
This is the premier’s fourth foreign visit after being installed six months ago.

Curfew in Batwal; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmndu, 28 March: An indefinite curfew has been slapped on Butwal and adjoining areas after the alleged murder of CPN-UML student activist Praschanda Thaibu by Maoists Thursday.
But Maoists denied their involvement.
Five rounds of bullets were pumped into Thaibu who died in hospital while undergoing treatment.CPN-UML threatened to withdraw from government and boycotted Friday’s cabinet meeting demanding action against culprits
CPN-UML central committee meeting was disrupted Friday.
CPN-UML central leaders, including Chairman Jhalanath Khanal are flying to Butwal Saturday to attend Thaibu’s funeral.
The coalition partner of Maoists in government has called for nation-wide protests Saturday.
Angry CPN-UML activists Friday attacked offices of Maoists.

Technical committee for integration of armies formed

Kathmandu, 28 March: A eight-member technical team for integration of 19,000 plus Maoist combatants in Nepal Army and resettlement has been formed by a special committee headed by PM Prachanda Friday.
Barshaman Pun Ananta and Dr Indrajit Rai represent Maoists in the committee while retired army officer Gopal Singh Bohara and Dipak Prasad Bhatta represent CPN-UML in the technical committee.
MJF is represented by former civil servant Ramananda Mishra and former police officer Shadananda Kurmi while retired general Balananda Sharma and former diplomat Dr Sambhuram Simkha represent Nepali Congress in the technical committee.
The committee has been directed to complete work by mid-July.
Meanwhile, Prachanda summoned Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal and Chief of Army Staff Gun Rukmangud Katawal to his residence and asked them to improve their relationship that cooled after the government first refused to extend tenure of eight brigadier generals reinstated by the supreme court.


“The imperialists agents are supporting pro-Tibetan movements in Nepal to disintegrate China.”

(Sports Minister Gopal Sakya, The Himalayan Times, 28 March)

“Why should Congress join the government to be bashed when CPN-UML is quitting government soon?”

(Sher Bahadur Deuba, Annapurna Post, 28 March)

Curfew on Butwal

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 27 March: Coalition partner of Maoists—CPN-UML—decided Friday to launch nationwide protests against the party leading the government.
The central committee meeting of CPN-UML was also suspended l following the murder of overnight of its activist by Maoists.
Maoists rejected a CPN-UML claim of murder by the Unified CPN (Maoist).
A curfew was slapped on Butwal and highways to control protests following the murder by shooting.
Prof Surya Subedi appointed

Kathmandu, 27 March: Prof. Surya Subedi has been appointed UN Special Rapporteur for human rights in Cambodia.
The UN Human Rights Council made the appointment unanimously.


“Everyone posses the right to object to and protest against anything they [supreme court] disapprove of.”

(Dr Baburam Bhattarai on supreme court decision asking government not to implement controversial decision not to extend tenure of eight brigadiers, (The Kathmandu Post, 27 March)

“You are a jallad [hangman]”

(Irate Jhalanath Khanal telling PM Prachanda over telephone after Maoist attack on UML student activists during free student union elections, Janaastha, 27 March)

“Nepal is not a yam trapped two boulders as claimed by past rulers. It is an independent country, we are Nepalese of a sovereign and independent country and we want to maintain our relationship with our neighbours on the basis of these facts.”

(Communications Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara, The Rising Nepal, 27 March)

“Have I committed excesses like Paras?”

(PM Prachanda’s son Prakash, Nepalpatra, 27 March)

“New Paras surfaces in Dhilikhel”

(Headline in Sambodhan with the PM’s son picture sleeping on a chair in drunken stupor, 27 March)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Govt. expanded

Kathmandu, 25 March: PM Prachanda Wednesday evening expanded his six-month 22-member government by inducting a Dalit and Tharu from his party.
Mahendra Pashwan was appointed agriculture minister to replace Matrika Prasad Yadav.
Ram Chandra Chaudhary was appointed Land Reforms Minister; the ministry was allocated to CPN (ML) which never joined government.

Former King Gyanendra returns home

Kathmandu, 25 March: Several hundred supporters Wednesday welcomed former King Gyanendra and Queen Komal when they returned home from India by a regular commercial flight from New Delhi after a three week visit.
Photographers and supporters clashed with police at the airport.
The then king didn’t talk to reporters.
In New Delhi, the then king held political discussions with Congress I President Sonia Gandhi and BJP leader LK Advani who will form a government if the main opposition is elected in parliamentary elections scheduled for April.
Gyanendra didn’t meet Pm Manmohan Singh as reported by a section of the Nepali media.

Defence ministry seeks vacation on interim order; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 March; Eight brigadier generals retired by government despite formal suggestion By Nepal Army for the extension of their tenure by another three years joined service Wednesday.
The supreme court earlier issued an interim order to government to reinstate them.
The defence ministry asked the apex court Wednesday to reconsider the decision by a one-man bench.
Relations between the Maoist-led government and the state army have soured over the issue,
Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal first approved a cabinet proposal to extend their tenure.
But the file has gone missing after PM Prachanda asked for it from the office of the prime minister.
Maoist newspapers have accused the chief secretary, the secretary at the prime minister’s office and the defence secretary for leaking the information to the press, the Nepali Congress and foreign embassies.
Government Wednesday sent sacked defence secretary Baman Prasad Neupane and sent him to the reserve pool while acting secretary at the prime minister’s office Pratap Kumar Pathak has been transferred to theindustry ministry
Maoists Wednesday staged a demonstration Wednesday in the capital against the supreme court decision reminding residents of the protest by the supporters of CPN-UML when the court overturned a decision of a UML government before political change sin April 2006.

Three dead in Birgunj shootings

Kathmandu, 26 March; Three persons were killed in shootings overnight and Thursday morning in Birgunj.
Two suspected extortionists were shot dead overnight in the town.
One student was shot dead Thursday morning.
The town has been shut down by protestors.

Lightning kills two, 17 injured in Ramechap

Kathmandu, 26 March: A lightning Wednesday killed two persons in Ramechap and injured 17 others.
Five of the seriously injured were airlifted to the capital for treatment Thursday.
Rain and storms have broken out after a long dry spell.

Party representatives names to special army integration committee

Kathmandu, 26 April: Four parties have nominated their representatives to the special army integration committee headed by PM Prachanda, Annapurna Post reports.
Maoists have nominated Indrajit Rai and Barsha Man Pun; Nepali Congress nominated Dr Sambhuram Simkhada and Balananda Sharma.
CPN-UML appointed Dipak Prakash Bhatta and Gopal Singh Bohara while MJF appointed Ramananda Mishra and Sunananda Kurmi.

Girija complains of increasing activities by foreign diplomats

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 26 April: Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala Wednesday complained of increasing unwanted activities by foreign diplomats even as he returned from New Delhi after discussing Nepali affairs with Indian leaders.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi didn’t meet him.
Koirala is also the main who negotiated the 12-point agreement between seven parliamentary parties and Maoists in the Indian capital with Indian help.
Foreign diplomats and Indians of all ranks had free access to Baluwatar when he was prime minister; he tolerated and invited them to the official residence of the government chief.
“Activities of foreign activities are increasing.
This happens when a state fails. Their interest then increases. Nothing will remaining our hands. Everything will go to their court. There should be a struggle to stop this.
“Outsiders are taking a keen interest in the internal affairs of a country that is on the verge of turning into a failed state,” he told reporters in his hometown Biratnagar before returning home.


“Girijababu hasn’t said the party will join government. He said the party can join government is pre-conditions are met.”

(Sher Bahadur Deuba, Annapurna Post, 26 March)

“An alternative government can be formed under CPN-UML.)

(Congress leader Bimalendra Nidhi, Annapurna Post, 26 March)

“Congress can’t join government to validate the monopoly of Unified CPN (Maoist).”

(Arjun Narsingh KC, ,The Rising Nepal, 26 March)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Limbuwan declared independent state (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 March: Upper Kirat Limbuwan National Front has declared nine districts north of Arun river an independent state, Ghatana ra Bichar reports.
Front General Secretary Shemhing Yakthumba said Kirat Pradesh (Limbuwan) was integrated after an agreement with King Prithvinarayan Shah following Nepal’s unification.
Now that monarchy has ended, the treaty has automatically ceased to exist, he said adding Limbuwan is now automatically independent.
Independence was declared this week and the first national conference that was to be held in Jhapa last Monday was banned by Nepal government.
Preparations are being made for strong resistance describing the government move as interference in an independent state’s affairs.
The Front has written to President Dr Ram Baran Yadav proposing establishing diplomatic relations.
Three Limbuwan activists arrested in Jhapa Monday have been charged for treason.

Human skulls being exported to Muslim countries

Kathmandu, 25 March: Nepal is emerging as a transit point for export of human skulls to Muslim countries, Tapendra Karki reports in Rajdhani.
Such skulls are used as decorative pieces in Muslim countries; dust of human skulls is mixed with heroin and other drugs for consumption, according to police sources.
Skulls framed with silver are supplied as decorative pieces.
Police is continuing investigation.
Police recently recovered 91 skulls.
Skulls are being transported to Taiwan as well.


“We joined a Maoist-led government. Now the time has come to review our participation in government. Such review wasn’t necessary before the general convention. Now the time has come.”
(CPN-UML General Secretary Ishwor Pokhrel, Budhabar, 25 March)

“Now if Nepalis cannot run Nepal properly there’s a possibility of civil war instead of a foreign coup.”

(Lt Gen Balananda Sharma, Dhristi, 25 March)

“I didn’t go [to China] as a Madeshi. I was then central committee member of CPN (Maoist). Kul Prasad KC Sonam accompanied me.”

(Matrika Prasad Yadav, Janaastha, 25 March)

SLC examinations begin

Kathmandu, 25 March: Altogether 412,081 students appeared for the SLC examinations this year beginning Wednesday from 1,405 centers— 45,040 more students than the previous year.
PLA combatants in 28 cantonments and satellite camps awaiting integration in Nepal Army or reintegration in society are also sitting for the examinations.
Altogether 27,684 students appeared for compulsory English Wednesday from Kathmandu while 56 sat for the examination in Manang.
A Korean student is sitting for the examination from St Mary’s High School.

Another shooting death in Bara

Kathmandu, 25 March: As violence continues in terai, a Pahadi was shot dead in Bara overnight.
Arjun Subedi Khadka was shot dead at assailants barraged into his home and pumped two bullets into his stomach.
Khadka died while being rushed to Birgunj hospital for treatment.

CPN-UML central committee meets Wednesday

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 March: Elected members of the CPN-UML will meet for the first time Wednesday after the party’s eighth general convention in Butwal one month ago.
The committee is expected to nominate members to the committee besides reviewing the work of the party in the Maoist-led government.
The powerful committee will also discuss future programme and work responsibilities of leaders.
The committee will also discuss the party’s relationship with Maoists amid continuing clashes between activists of the two communist parties.
The party may appoint former general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal ‘senior leaders’ for which there is a provision in the party statute.
“We’re trying to establish a precedent for appointing retired party chief to a respectable place,” incumbent general Secretary Jhalanath Khanal told Kantipur.
A group is the party is also pushing for KP Oli’s appointment, the newspaper reported.
Oli lost the chairmanship of the party to Khanal at the convention.

Party leaders summoned to constitution drafting committee for suggestions

Kathmandu, 25 March: Prime Minister Prachanda Wednesday presented the Unified CPN (Maoist) draft of a proposed constitution to the constitution drafting committee Wednesday after summons.
The committee is headed by Madhav Kumar Nepal.
The committee decided Tuesday to invite leaders of all political parties for suggestions; 26 parties are represented in parliament and constituent assembly.
MJF Chairman and Foreign Minister Upendra has been summoned Thursday while Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala has been invited on 31 March.
Parliamentary teams that had fanned out to the districts to collect public opinion on a constitution returned to the capital this week.
Public response was poor, team members said.
People couldn’t understand complex worded questions, members said.
Sub-committees are expected to begin drafting the constitution after suggestions are collected.
May 2010 is the deadline to complete the draft of the constitution.
Most likely, the constitution will be drafted on the recommendation of political parties.
Maoists have suggested a presidential system while Nepali Congress has proposed a prime ministerial parliamentary system of government.
Maoists oppose a parliamentary system of government with a role for the opposition.
Maoists have also proposed on what they call ‘fedual and imperialist parties’.

Former king, queen return from India Wednesday

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 March: Former King Gyanendra and Queen Komal return home Wednesday after a three-week India tour—their first after monarchy was toppled.
The former king met top central leaders in New Delhi, including Congress I President Sonia Gandhi and BJP leader LK Advani, the next prime minister should main opposition BJP win Indian parliamentary elections in April.
The former king held discussions with BJP Chairman Rajnath Singh and former BJP Foreign Minister Jashwant Singh in the Indian capital Tuesday.
“The former king didn’t mention anything negative about the present government of Nepal. He, however, said the monarchy was not that wrong as being portrayed in domestic politics, The Himalayan Times reports quoting an unidentified source after the meeting.
During the meeting, the BJP chief expressed his apprehension about the Maoist-led government for meddling with cultural rights in Nepal, particularly the change of priests at the Pashupatinath temple, the newspaper reported in its Wednesday editions.
The couple first attended a royal wedding in Madhaya Pradesh and holidayed in Gujarat.

Kerosene discovered in Kapilvasthu

Kathmandu, 25 March: Kerosene was discovered Tuesday along Badnganga river bank at Kopawa-4 in Kapilvasthu, Annapurna Post reports.
Kerosene started oozing out from a ditch was it was being dug.
There was 50 percent kerosene content in the water.
A large crowd immediately gathered to collect the kerosene.

CPN (Maoist), KJWP forge working unity

Kathmandu, 25 March: CPN (Maoist) launched by Matrika Yadav and Kirat Janabadi Workers’ Party (KJWP) Tuesday forged working unity against what they called ‘reactionary forces’.
A seven-member committee has been formed to push cooperation.
[Note: It was wrongly reported Tuesday the agreement was between KJWP and the party led by PM Prachanda. The error is regretted.]

Cricket at the foot of Mount Everest

Kathmandu, 25 March: A group of Londoners are leaving for Nepal on April 9 to play the world’s highest game of cricket on a plateau on Mount Everest, agencies report from London.
They will stage a full match of Twenty20 cricket 16,945 feet up in the Himalayas which will be beamed to Lords.
The party of 50 includes 22 players, eight reserves, medics and groundsmen as well as supporters who will prepare a cricket tea complete with cucumber sandwiches.

More details of supreme court brigadier decision

Kathmandu, 24 March: A one-man bench of supreme court justice Kalayan Shrestha asked government to report in 15 days reasons for not extending the tenure of the brigadiers.
Although they were superannuated they were still eligible for service through age.
Published reports said Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal has signed a file recommending the extension of their tenure.
The file went missing after Prime Minister Prachanda asked for it from three government secretaries.
President Dr Ram Baran Yadav and the prime minister discussed the issue Tuesday.

PM Prachanda, president discuss possible government expansion, reshuffle

Kathmandu, 24 March: PM Prachanda and President Dr Ram Baran Yadav Tuesday discussed possible cabinet reshuffle and expansion Tuesday.
The president called on the president for a regular meeting.
Prachanda said earlier he expected Nepali Congress to join a Maoist-led government.
Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala has been expressing confusing signals on joining government after his return from India last week after discussing Nepal affairs with Indian leaders,
Koirala has said Congress is ready to join a national government if Maoists implement past understanding and agreements.
The pre-conditions for the CA elections on 10 April were abandoned for the vote; the conditions have been resurrected.


“”.. former king and our leaders who have gone to India in search for a political Viagra, should be afraid of senior and extremely powerful leaders Dahal, Khanal and Yadav [Upendra] and Katawal. Because, these four persons can be defenders and destroyers of republican Nepal.”

(Manuj Chaudhary, Nepal newsmagazine, 24 March)


Supreme court asks government not to implement decision to end tenure of brigadiers (BREAKING NEWS)

Kathmandu, 24 March: Supreme court bench Tuesday issued an interim order to government not to implement a decision to end the tenure of eight brigadier generals.
The generals asked the court to issue such an order charging the order was illegal.
Maoist Deputy Parliamentary leader Narayan Kazi Shrestha Prakash in an immediate reaction said,” Supreme court is not god to overturn a legal decision of government.”
The decision is a setback for the Maoist-led government.
US Ambassador Nancy J. Powell Monday raised the issue with Prime Minister Prachanda and asked if the decision would affect the peace process.
For the first time government rejected a recommendation of the army chief to collectively extend the tenure of generals by three years after they completed a four-year term.
Government said it was providing opportunities for younger officers but supporters other officers said mass retirement would create shortage of trained manpower.
A cold war has started between the Maoist-led government and Nepal Army into which 19,000 plus PLA commandants are seeking entry.

Former king meets BJP leaders

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 24 March: Former King Gyanendra held discussions Tuesday with main opposition BJP Chairman Rajnath Singh.
He also held with former Foreign Minister Jashwant Singh from BJp that is pushing for a Hindu state in Nepal.
The party earlier abandoned its support for monarchy against which Congress I and Indian communists launched a tirade ultimately toppling a 238-year-old monarchy.
The former king continued his political meetings in the Indian capital before returning home after a three-week India visit Wednesday.
The visit if the first foreign trip of the former king after monarchy’s ouster.
Monarchy only remains in Japan, Thailand and Cambodia now.
People’s don’t rule out the return of monarchy in a country where Maoists now dominate.
Maoists were propelled to power with foreign, including Indian help and support.

Maoists, Kirat Workers’ Party agree to cooperate

Kathmandu, 24 March: Maoists and Kirat Workers’ Party Tuesday signed an agreement for working unity.
The two parties formed a seven-member committee to work for unity,
Kirat party is an offshoot of the Maoist party.
The unity comes after unification of the CPN (Maoist) and CPN (Unity Center/Mashal).

Monday, March 23, 2009

Former king meets Manmohan Singh

Kathmandu, 23 March: Former King Gayendra and Queen Komal are returning home from India Wednesday, Jana Bhawana reports.
The couple was previously scheduled to return last Friday.
The visit was extended for five days was for the medical check-up of the former queen; she has shrapnel in her lungs after being injured in the Narayanhiti royal palace massacre
The former king held discussions with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Sunday.
He is scheduled to meet BJP President Rajnath Singh today [Monday].
The former king is likely to meet Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday.

Monarchy can return: Lokendra Bahadur Chand

Kathmandu, 23 March: RPP leader Lokendra Bahadur Chand said former King Gayendra’s India visit is not a subject for discussion by political parties, Annapurna Post reports from Mahendranagar.
The visit shouldn’t be made an issue, he said.
‘Accusations will only be accusations; they won’t
s have any effect,” he said charging an attempt was being to distract attention.
In the game of the possible, anything can happen, he said, on comments about a baby king.
“There are possibilities in politics; what will happen in the future can’t be predicted; that applies for the revival of monarchy.
“I won’t comment on monarchy; did anyone believe Maoists would come to power so soon? That is the same with baby king,” he said.


‘Their stories [victims of human rights abuses] were similar and painfully reminiscent of the dozens that I heard during my eight years working with the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.”

(Visiting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, The Rising Nepal, 23 March)

PM Prachanda visiting Norway, Finland

Kathmandu, 24 March: Prime Minister Prachanda leaves 28 March for official visits of Norway and Finland, foreign ministry said.
The prime minister leaves for the Scandinavian countries one day before parliament meets for its winter session.
Prachanda begins his Norway visit 29 March.
A bilateral aid agreement is being signed in Norway during the visit.
The Finland visit starts 1 April.

Supreme court asks govt. not to implement constitutional council rules

Kathmandu, 24 March: Supreme court Monday through a stay order asked government no to execute rules prepared by the constitutional council.
The move will stop government appointments to constitutional bodies.
A writ has been filed at the court claiming the legislature should first have framed laws for such appointments; the writ claimed government attempted to bypass parliament by framing its own rules for appointments.

Eight brigadier generals move the supreme court

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 24 March; Eight brigadier generals whose term was not extended by the fence ministry for another three years Monday challenged the decision at the supreme court.
Hearing starts Tuesday
The group alleged the move was illegal asking for a stay order.
They asked the apex court to direct the government to reinstate them.
Chief of Army Staff Gen Rukmangud Katawal had recommended extension of tenure after completing a four-year term.
Main parties in government and main opposition Nepali Congress supported the brigadiers.
Published reports quoting Chief Secretary Bhojraj Ghimere said Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal first signed a cabinet proposal to extend their term; the file was then taken to Prime Minister Prachanda’s office where it has gone missing.
US Ambassador Nancy J. Powell Monday discussed the controversial retirement of generals with PM Prachanda.
“She asked whether army recruitment and the controversy over the tenure of army officers will affect the peace process,” Foreign Advisor Hira Bahadur Thapa said after the meeting.
Meanwhile a meeting of the special committee of integration of armies chaired by PM Prachanda Monday couldn’t form a eight-member technical committee for the delayed integration of PLA combatants in Nepal Army.
The committee is meeting again Friday,

One killed in Nepalgunj bomb blast

Kathmandu, 24 March: A suspected Muslim died in a bomb blast at a transport office in Nepalgunj as violence continues in the terai.
The pressure cooker bob blast destroyed the store room and a parked motorcycle.

Advisor of foreign minister under CIAA watch

Kathmandu, 24 March: Shyamananda Suman and advisor of foreign minister Upendra Yadav, is under watch of CIAA.
Suman is a former ambassador to Qatar.
The anti-corruption watchdog Monday sought explanation from Suman on alleged financial irregularities.

Only half forms filled on suggestions for new constitution

Kathmandu, 24 March: Only half the forms have been filled by people on subjects to be included in the new constitution, Narendra Saud reports in Annapurna Post.
The suggestions are with the secretariat of the constituent assembly.
Most of the parliamentary teams that returned from the districts Monday have returned with only 30 to 35 percent forms filled.
Many of the returned forms don’t have any suggestions.
Altogether 3.7 million were distributed to people on 11 subjects.
“Many asked how can replies be furnished immediately on such difficult questions,” Joint Secretary Himlal Subedi deputed to Makwanpur said.
“Most questionnaires have been returned without comments saying the questions were too difficult,” Joint Secretary Som Bahadur Thapa deputed to Nawalparasi said.

Child abducted from capital found near Raxaul

Kathmandu, 24 March: The body of seven-year-old child Sonili Kumari Singh abducted from Ghattekulo in the capital has been found on a filed near Raxaul, Kantipur reports
The body found Thursday was identified by relatives Monday, according to Parsa SP Subodh Ghimere.
She was abducted 16 March from near her home.


Jim Edwards dead

Kathmandu, 24 March: A.V. Jim Edwards died Monday after a short illness, an announcement said.
He founded Tiger Mountain Group that ran Tiger Tops in Chitwan.
The adventurer, conservationist was born in Jersey, Channel Islands 24 November 1935.
He took over Tiger Tops in 1972 and Mountain Travel in 1975.
He founded World Elephant Polo Association and International Trust for Nature Conservation.

Sabin Raj Shrestha appointed CEO of Bank of Kathmandu

Kathmandu, 24 March: Sabin Raj Shrestha has been appointed CEO of Bank of Kathmandu.
He was promoted from chief business officer.
Radhesh Pant has been recalled as managing director.

Sundar Bahadur Shrestha resigns from Nepal Development Bank

Kathmandu, 24 March: Sundar Bahadur Shrestha has resigned as CEO of troubled Nepal Development Bank along with director Dipak Narsingh KC.
Nepal Rashtra Bank declared the development troubled one year ago.

India offers to sell 500MG electricity

Kathmandu, 24 March: Power Trading Corporation Ltd (PTC) of India has proposed to supply additional 500MW to Nepal, The Kathmandu Post reports.
Shanker Prasad Koirala, secretary at Ministry of Water Resources, said PTC had stated in a letter to the ministry it could provide 500MW in 18 months if Nepal government agreed to its proposal.
PTC could maintain the supply for next 20 to 25 years with a single unit costing IRs 3 (NRs 4.80).
The proposal states PTC is ready to ‘re-import’ power from Nepal if the latter manages to generate enough power to meet the domestic demand.


“He’s [former Kin Gyanendra] finally independent. Where he goes has no relevance.”

(Girija Prasad Koirala, Annapurna Post, 24 March]

“Congress won’t join government to sign its own death certificate; He won’t go there to stand witness to Maoist excesses and abuses.”

(Spokesman Arjun Narsingh KC, Naya Patrika, 24 March)

“Congress can join government to fulfill its responsibility to draft the constitution if Maoists implement past understanding and agreements. The ball is now in the Maoist court.”

(Sujata Koirala, Naya Patrika, 24 March)

‘We will consider the issue of joining the government if the conditions are fulfilled. We cannot join the government amid the status quo.”

(Girija Prasad Koirala, The Himalayan Times, 24 March)

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Former King Gyanendra, BJP leader Lal Krishna Advani meet (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 March: Former King Gyanendra and India’s main opposition leader and possible future prime minister BJP leader Lal Krishna Advani held 40 minute discussions in New Delhi Sunday.
Details weren’t disclosed.
The meeting was held at Advani's residence.
Parliamentary elections are scheduled in India later this year.
The former king last week held discussions with Congress I President Sonia Gandhi.
The ousted king’s meetings with Indian leaders have upset Maoists leading the government.
Maoist leaders have charged the former king, Nepali Congress and CPN-UML of conspiring to oust them with New Delhi’s connivance.
PM Prachanda himself admitted the spend eight of 10 years of the people’s movement in India.
Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee has said New Delhi brokered a 12-point agreement between seven political parties and Maoists to bring the extreme communists to power.
Maoists unconvincingly are denying they captured state power with Indian help.
Top Maoist leaders moved freely in the corridors of power in New Delhi even as Indian declared them terrorists; Maoists are still on the US terrorist list and are attempting to be de-listed.
The former king has extended his three-week India stay and is holding discussions with Indian leaders of society.

Ambassador Murari Raj Sharma to UK sacked

Kathmandu, 22 March: Foreign ministry has sacked Ambassador to Great Britain Murari Raj Sharma effective from Friday, Annapurna Post reports.
He was sacked after Sharma was preparing to write to the British foreign minister Nepal government failed diplomatically and politically.
The ministry has banned him from conducting daily activities.
He was recalled two months ago.

Defence minister Badal had recommended extension of tenure of eight brigadiers

Kathmandu, 22 March: Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal had first recommended the extension of tenure of eight brigadier generals and later rescinded the decision, Annapurna Post reports.
Chief Secretary Bhojraj Ghimere said the file has been sent to the cabinet.
He said,” I can’t disclose the details.”

(Note: This was first disclosed by weekly newspaper Janaastha. The Post report confirms the story.)

Nepali girl students in Australia involved in flesh trade

Kathmandu, 22 March: Nepali girls who have gone to Australia for higher studies are involved in sex trade, Annapurna Post reports.
Nepali embassy has informed the government formally through letter.
“It’s learnt many girls have been compelled to be involved in flesh trade because of the lack of employment opportunities,” the letter to the foreign and finance ministries say.

MJF splits

Kathmandu, 22 March: A group of Madeshi Jandhikar Forum (MJF) leaders dissociated themselves from the parent party on Saturday and formed a new grouping—Madesh Terai Party, The Kathmandu Post reports.
The new grouping has formed a 11-member central committee leaded by Amar Yadav.
‘We will formally launch our party next week,” said Yadav, who has defected to the MJF from the Nepali Congress.


“He [Dr Baburam Bhattarai] claimed that former King Gyanendra, NC President Girija Prasad Koirala and UML leader KP Oli did their best to topple the Maoist government during their India visit.”

(The Kathmandu Post report, 22 March)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Long dry spell broken in Valley

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 March: Valley residents were relieved Saturday after a long dry spell was broken with moderate rain accompanied by thunder showers.
The rain was enough to wet dry fields as the Valley and the rest of the nation experiences a bad drought in recent years.
The Valley rain was accompanied by hailstorm.
The rain was still inadequate as residents experience a crippling 16-hour load-shedding schedule and drinking water shortage.
Happy residents celebrated rain in the rest of the country that started falling Friday amid reports several people died in lightning.
Naked women danced and frogs were married off soliciting rain as pujas were offered at spring sources.

Former King Gyanendra return home delayed

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 March: Former King Gyanendra and Queen Komal didn’t return home Saturday even after a three-week first foreign visit after the declaration of a republic.
They were originally expected to return Friday after visits of the central Indian states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and New Delhi, sources said.
One unconfirmed report said the couple will only come back home in the middle of next week.
The couple is presently in New Delhi; the former king held discussions with Congress I President Sonia Gandhi this week sending political ripples back home.
Maoists, who conducted their people’s war based in India and which brokered a controversial 12-point agreement, are the only party who have passed negative comments.
Maoists deny claim of Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee New Delhi brokered the 12-point deal between Maoists and seven parliamentary parties that ultimately toppled monarchy.
Kantipur quoting an unidentified source quoting the former King said Saturday,” They said the country would develop after removing the king. It’s been three years since the king was removed. But what’s happened to the country?”
Kantipur reports from the Indian capital said the former king is continuing political discussions.
The newspaper didn’t mention persons he has met.
Dr Karan Singh, brother-in-law of RPP Chairman Pashupati SJB Rana, held a luncheon reception for the couple, the same day the former king held discussions with Sonia Gandhi.

PM Prachanda says he will expand, reshuffle government

Kathmandu, 21 March: PM Prachanda said he will expand and reshuffle his six-month Maoist-led government next week to include main opposition Nepali Congress.
Prachanda told this to reporters in Lalitpur Saturday even as the Congress said amid conflicting reports it won’t join the government.
But other reports said party leader Girija Prasad Koirala is toying with the idea of joining government after returning home after discussions with Indian leaders in New Delhi this week.
Without naming CPN-UML and MJF, Prachanda some political aprties are behaving like the opposition in government.

Preparations to promote colonels

Kathmandu, 21 March: Defence ministry is preparing to promote colonels in Nepal Army, Annapurna Post reports.
A ministry soured said personal details of colonels have been asked from Nepal Army.
Eight brigadier generals were retired.

Friday, March 20, 2009

CPN-UML affiliated students continue lead in vote counting

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 March: CPN-UML supporters lead in continued vote continued in Thursday’s student union elections in 300 plus campuses nation-wide under Tribhuvan University and Sanskrit University.
Results indicate the third largest party in parliament following the 10 April constituent assembly elections indicates CPN-UML student supporters dominate student politics.
Maoists, the largest party in parliament, are behind the Nepali Congress.
CPN-UML affiliated students have captured 98 campuses, Nepali Congress supporters 59 and Maoists 45, according to results declared so far.
Vote counting in violent elections continues.
Counting of votes in some campuses has been suspended because of violence.

CPN-UML supporter killed in continuing terai violence

Kathmandu, 21 March: CPN-UML supporter was shot dead in continuing violence in the terai.
Bijaya Yadav was pulled out from his home in Dhanusha and shot dead Thursday night.
One person has been arrested.

No commitment to immediately extend mandate of OHCHR

Kathmandu, 21 March: Prime Minister Prachanda Friday told visiting
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay the mandate of its Nepal office will be extended after consultations with political parties.
The mandate of the office opened 2005 expires June 2009.
She sought a three-year extension.

Pensions of British ex-Gurkhas raised to meet inflation

Kathmandu, 21 March; Pensions of 26,500 ex-British Gurkhas will be raised 14.1 percent from 1 April to meet annual inflation in Nepal, British embassy said,
IN addition, 1,000 pensioners aged 80 and over will get an added 20 percent benefit.
The increment was announced by Under-Secretary of State for Defence and Minister for Veterans Kevan Jones in parliament, according to the embassy.

Myanmar ambassador begins work

Kathmandu, 21 March; Rsident Mynmar Ambassador U Thet Oo presented his credentials to President Dr Ram Baran Yadav Friday and began work.

Eight brigadiers still report for work

Kathmandu, 21 March: Ramindra Chhetri, spokesman, Nepal Army (NA), on Friday said that eight superannuated brigadier generals continued to attend their duties art the military headquarters, The Himalayan Times reports.
On Thursday, the defence ministry informed the NA that it has pensioned off the brigadiers.


:That [to bring Maoists into government] was a mistake. Maoists should have been inducted in the interim government without a final decision on the Maoist army.”

(Madhav Kumar Nepal, Naya Patrika, 21 March)

“Former King Gyanendra may have gone to India on a private visit. Indian government has no interest or importance towards it.”

(Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood, Nepal Samacharpatra, 21 March)

Jesuits Fr Stiller, Fr Locke dead

Kathmandu, 20 March: Two American Jesuit priests who came to Nepal in the late 1950’s and taught at St Xavier’s, Godavari, have died, Godavari Alumni Association (GAA) announced.
A condolence meeting to remember them will be conducted at GAA Sunday.
Fr Ludwig F. Stiller, 80, died 10 March.
Fr John K. Locke, 76, died Wednesday.
From teaching, the two Catholic priests went on to specialize in Nepali studies.
Stiller specialized in history while Locke concentrated on Buddhist studies.

Madesh Mukti Tigers, govt. hold talks

Kathmandu, 20 March: Government and Madesh Mukti signed a four-point agreement Friday with the terai rebel group agreeing to suspend insurgency in the south bordering India.
Rebel leader Bhola Prasad Mukhiya said government agreed to treat the rebel group as a political group while agreeing to provide security to rebels and release its arrested activists.
Government had earlier held talks with six groups separately without much headway.
Peace Minister Janardhan Sharma Prabhakar and Education Minister Renu Yadav held talks with the rebels.

CPN-UML student supporters maintain lead

Kathmandu, 20 March: Student supporters of CPN-UML continue to lead in Friday vote counting for Thursday’s elections to student union elections under Tribhuvan University and Sanskrit University.
CPN-UML supporters have captured 78 student campus unions; Congress and Maoists have won in 59 and 46 campuses respectively so far.
Counting of votes continues amid clashes in some centers.

Three-year renewal sought by Pillay

Kathmandu, 20March: Visiting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay Friday sought a three-year extension for its Nepal office at meeting with PM Prachanda, the PM’s Press Secretary On Sharma said.
The mandate ends June 2009.

More than 48 forest fires rage in hills, terai

Kathmandu, 20 March: Forty-eight forest fires have broken out in national parks and conservation areas, Kantipur reports.
Satellite photographs Thursday showed fires have broken out in Langtang, Makalu Barun, Kangchenjunga, Chitwan, Shiupapuri, Bardia National Park, Parsa Conservation Area and Dhorpatan hunting reserve.
Besides these areas, 48 other jungle fires have broken in different parts of the country.
This is probably the century’s worst fire.
Previously, fires were confined only in the terai.
Eleven persons have lost their lives in fires this year.
Government has asked for foreign assistance.

Nepali Ambassador to Great Britain told to vacate embassy in 15 days

Kathmandu, 20 March: Foreign ministry Wednesday told Nepal’s Ambassador Murari Sharma to vacate the embassy by 31 March, Annapurna Post reports.
A letter was sent after he ignored repeated orders to return home within one month.
This is the first time a ambassador has been asked to return within a fixed deadline.

Maoists to construct roads around camps

Kathmandu, 20 March: Maoists PLA combatants who hare in camps for more than 2 and ½ years will be deployed in development work, Annapurna Post reports.
PM Prachanda has agreed to the proposal.
Maoists are making budgetary preparations for construction of roads around camps.
PLA Deputy Commander Chandra Prasad Khanal Baldeb said a proposal will be forwarded to government soon.
Discussions had earlier been held with the prime minister’s office, defence, finance and home ministries.


“Political parties have reached an agreement in principle to move ahead with understanding. On this basis, indication has been received Congress will join government.”

(Maoist Spokesman Dinanath Sharma, Kantipur, 20 March)

“…after Koirala [Girija] was directed by India, on the condition of the ’defence of democracy’, indications are available [Nepali Congress] will join government. There are rumours inside Congress efforts are on to establish daughter Sujata as party general secretary and deputy prime minister.”

(Gopal Khanal, Kantipur, 20 March)

“Half a dozen committees [constitution drafting] didn’t receive any recommendations. Only lawyers can understand questions prepared by the main constitution drafting committee. People didn’t fill in the question forms because they couldn’t understand the questions.)

(Rajdhani report, 20 March)

CPN-UML affiliated student union leads in vote counting

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 March: CPN-UML affiliated student union is leading in vote counting in Thursday’s violent student union elections nation-wide in 300 plus campuses under Tribhuvan University and Sanskrit University.
Vote counting continues Friday.
One student was killed in Jhapa in police firing and nearly 100 others were in clashes between students and police; seven students injured in Sankhuwasabha were evacuated to the capital for treatment Friday.
A strike has been called by students in the two districts Friday..
A curfew was slapped in Sindhulimadi Thursday after clashes between rival student groups and elections were held in Birgunj amid a bomb explosion.
A triangular contest has emerged between supporters of Maoists, CPN-UML and Nepali Congress.

UN human rights official meets prime minister, president

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 March; Visiting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay Friday in separate discussions with Prime Minister Prachanda and President Dr Ram Baran Yadav lobbied for the renewal of the commission’s Nepal office that expires June 2009.
The office was established under pressure of western governments that defamed the National Human Rights Commission even as they pressed for its establishment to push human rights.
She sought the extension as foreign interference in Nepal and presence increased amid concern at home.
Diplomatic sources said the Maoist-led government is also under western government pressure to accept a regional office of the commission in Nepal at a time when US is putting pressure on the government on behalf of Tibetan refugees.
The regional office of the highly political and controversial commission will be an embarrassment for the Maoist-led government and successors.
Government should say no to it.
The only work of the Nepal office has been to monitor crackdown on protest demonstrations besides issuing routine statements on the rights situation that can be monitored from headquarters in Geneva.
Government should, therefore, resist international pressure to extend the mandate of the Kathmandu office and the opening of a regional office which can be opened elsewhere in South Asia.
Pillay goes on to India from Nepal at the end of a five-day visit Sunday.
She criticized the culture of impunity and added not a single person has been book for human rights violation in Nepal.
But she didn’t accept the commission’s failure in effectively asking government to punish violators.
Government has encouraged impunity, she accepted, by pardoning offenders.
Supporters of the Free Tibet movement held a secret meeting in Pokhara 10 March, Nepalpatra reports.
Tibetans from Nepal, Sikkim and Himanchal Pradesh particvipate in the meeting attended by Nepalis working in foreign offices and some representatives of foreign embassies were also present.
Some veterans on the Khampa movement of 2030 presented their views.

Kirtinidhi Bista in India for medical treatment

Kathmandu, 20 March: Former Prime Minister Kirtinidhi Bista was evacuated to New Delhi for medical treatment, family sources said.
Bista has been ailing for long from stomach trouble.

Indian Muslim shot, injured in Biratnagar

Kathmandu, 20 March: Indian Muslim bamboo trader Mohamed
Ali was shot and injure din Biratnagar overnight amid
continuing violence in the south.
He is undergoing treatment at Kosi zonal hospital for hand injuries.

Two major parties in Maoist-led government, Nepali Congress ask Maoists to rescind decision to terminate service to eight brigadiers

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 March: CPN-UML and MJF, two biggest coalition partners of Unified CPM (Maoist) charged Maoists Monday terminated the services of eight brigadier generals without consultations in the cabinet.
The parties separately asked the Maoists to bring the issue before the cabinet for discussion and reconsideration.
Main opposition Nepali Congress said it will raise the issue in the winter session of parliament beginning 29March to pressurize to change the decision already conveyed to Nepal Army by defence ministry through a formal letter.
CPN-UML leader KP Sharma Oli charged Thursday Prachanda decided not to extend the tenure of the brigadiers under PLA pressure.
“Maoists have no right to meddle in army affairs in a reputed organization like the army and pull the army towards it in an unpopular act,” Oli told reporters Thursday at his residence.
Prachanda refused to extend the tenure of the brigadiers at a meeting Thursday with main opposition leader Girija Prasad Koirala.
Former Prime Minister Surya Bahadur Thapa Thursday charged the Maoist move was an attempt destroy the structure of the state army into which it is seeking integration of PLA combatants.
This is the first time government has collectively rejected the recommendation of the army for mass extension of tenure of senior army officers.
Individual officers whose promotions were rejected in the past have supported the Maoist-led government arguing the move was routine and the decision shouldn’t be politicized.
The defence ministry has formally notified Nepal Army of the government decision.
Published reports said Prachanda has a file in which Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal recommended in a cabinet proposal to extend the tenure of generals by another three years.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Student union elections amid violence

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 March: Student union elections are being held in 300 plus campuses under Tribhuvan University amid violence and postponements.
Elections were postponed in three campuses in the capital amid charges of irregularities.
Elections are being held amid bomb explosions and clashes between police and students.
Elections haven’t started amid disputes.
A triangular contest is emerging between supporters of Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and Maoists.
The result will determine the hold of the three parties on campus students.

PM, Girija hold discussions

Kathmandu, 19 March: Prime Minister Prachanda Thursday held political discussions with main opposition leader Girija Prasad Koirala at the latter’s residence.
A Congress source said the prime minister won’t bow down to pressure to rescind reinstate eight brigadier generals whose tenure expired Monday.
A published report said the government chief is holding a file for the promotions of the generals.
Maoist Defence Minister Raam Bahadur Thapa Badal had signed on a cabinet proposal to extend their tenure.
A conflict is brewing between government and the army over the issue.

Seven injured in Birgunj bomb blast

Kathmandu, 19 March: Seven persons were injured in an overnight bomb blast in Birgunj, three seriously.
Violence continues unabated in the south.
The blast went off at six in the evening in front of Maissthan temple.

Maoist supporters appointed envoys to India, France

Kathmandu, 19 March: Maoist supporters have been appointed ambassadors to India and France.
Chandra Kant Paudel, a economics teacher, has been appointed ambassador to India while Ram Karki has been appointed ambassador to France.
Karki represented Maoists in Europe during the people’s war.

UN human rights chief discusses renewal of OHCHR mandate

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 March: Visiting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay Thursday discussed expending the mandate of the UN High Commission for Human Rights that expires this year.
Discussions were held with ministers, including Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav.
The Commission entered Nepal under pressure mainly of western countries by defaming the National Human Rights Commission during the royal regime.
The cash-strapped OHCHR has very little work to do in Nepal; the work can be done from headquarters in Geneva.
UN has a large presence in Nepal.
United Nations High Commission for Refugees is in Nepal overseeing the management of 109,000 Bhutanese refugees in Nepal for more than 17 years overseeing their management but has failed work for their return home.
Instead, they are being to sent to western countries under a controversial programme to help help Bhutanese ethnic cleansing.
The Buddhist Himalayan kingdom forcibly expelled Hinhus of Nepalai ethnicity.
The UNDP has an independent representation.

PM Prachanda leaving for Norway 28 March

Kathmandu, 19 March: PM Prachanda is leaving for a visit of some European countries 28 March, Annapurna Post reports.
He is visiting Norway.
He is also likely to visit Belgium.
Chinese Ambassador Qiu Guohong has asked Foreign Minister Upendra Yadhav to visit China for two days beginning 7 April.

Maoist-led government decides to ban strikes

Kathmandu, 19 March: Maoists were swept to power through extended and prolonged strikes, but the Maoist-led government Thursday decided to ban strikes along highways, industries, hospitals, educational institutions and hydro power plants.
Minister Deb Gurung disclosed this Thursday after a cabinet decision.


‘Instead of suggestions for a new constitution, complaints were centered around personal problems.”

(Communist leader and lawmaker Chitra Bahadur KC, Kantipur, 19 March)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Former King Gyanendra, Sonia Gandhi meet (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 March: Former King Gyanendra and Congress I President Sonia Gandhi held political discussions in New Delhi Wednesday—a meeting that will create a political earthquake back home in Nepal.
India had helped oust a 238-year-old monarchy three years ago.
Gandhi didn’t meet Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala last week in the Indian capital.
Maoists said Nepalis meeting Indian leaders abroad will be counterproductive even as they launched their people’s movement based from India.
Direct contact between the former king and Indian leadership has been established after three years of bitter relationship.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Nepali Congress lobbies tenure extension of brigadiers; Badal had extended the service of brigadiers

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 March: Nepali Congress and its President Girija Prasad Koirala, to pressurize the Maoist-led government, invited leaders of political parties Wednesday at the Koirala residence to urge government to extend the tenure of eight brigadier generals that ended Monday night.
All party representatives attended the meeting boycotted by the MJF—the third largest coalition partner; CPN-UML attended the meeting.
The refusal of the defence ministry to extend the tenure at the request of Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal has taken a political turn with major parties criticizing the defence ministry decision.
The eight brigadiers Tuesday attended office even after their service period ended in a clear show of defiance against the government.
The defence ministry is under Maoist control.
The Army earlier disobeyed ministry order to fill in 3,100 vacancies as a direct conflict brews between the state army and the defence ministry.
Gen Katawal lobbied for the second consecutive day Tuesday with President and Supreme Commander-in-Chief of Nepal Army Dr Ram Baran Yadav to extend the service of the brigadiers.
Nepali Congress leaders Tuesday also asked the president to intervene on behalf of Nepal Army.
PLA has supported the government move.
Meanwhile, it has come to light Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal has signed a note extending the service of the generals by another three years, a newspaper report said.
Chief Secretary Bhojraj Ghimere has been telling his close circles Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal has already signed a proposal to extend the service of eight brigadiers requested by the army chief 24 February, Janaastha reports.
“The Minister signed the proposal on the morning of 13 March in our presence; he carried the file himself,” a source told Janaastha quoting Ghimere.
But after the proposal was signed cabinet secretary Pratap Kumar took the file to the prime minister where the file remains.
The source said,” The defence minister has signed the proposal. The file can be asked for.”
The file hasn’t reached the army headquarters as yet—four days after it was signed,
A newspaper close to Maoists Tuesday reported the chief secretary, secretary Pathak and the defence secretary pressurized Badal to sign the file.

Nepal asks Beijing, Lhasa rail link extension to Lumbini

Kathmandu, 18 March; Prime Minister Prachanda Tuesday asked visiting Chinese Assistant Minister for Commerce Chen Jian to extend the Beijing, Lhasa rail link to Lumbini, the birthplace of The Buddha.
Lumbini lies on the Nepal, India border.
The proposal may irk New Delhi.
Chen is in Nepal to prepare the coming meeting of the China-Nepal inter-governmental economic and trade committee.

2066 to have 12 months

Kathmandu, 18 March: After a long controversy whether to keep 11 or 12 months in the year 2066 BA, astrologers have agreed to keep 12 months in the year, RSS reports.
Astrologers are now busy preparing the calendar of the year 2066 after the government’s bid to remove the month of Chaitra in 2066 failed.
The Ministry of Culture has also directed the Calendar Fixing Committee to prepare the calendar of 12 months for the next year.
The festival reforms task force formed by the government had recommended for 11 months in 2066 to adjust with the earth’s rotation in its axis vis-à-vis solar movement. The cabinet has also decided to adjust the calendar.


“Am I wrong when I say loot as much as you can [private schools],but give us at least 5 percent from the pie [in education service tax].”

(Dr Babauram Bhattarai, The Kathmandu Post, 18 March)