Nepal Today

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wild elephants kill two in Sunsari

Kathmandu, 30 April: Two were killed Thursday by wild elephants morning in a forest in Sunsari while foraging.
Both were males.

Rehabilitation, integration of Maoist combatants not possible within 15 July: UN

Kathmandu, 30 April: The rehabilitation and integration of 19,000 plus Maoist combatants in Nepal Army by 15 July may not be possible, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said in a review report from 23 January to 24 April.
“The spirit of cooperation that is required to advance the peace process needs to be reviewed,” he said.
UNMIN mandate ends in July.
Ban said differences between political parties hinderd the implementation of the peace process.
He said there is also an atmosphere of mistrust between the Maoist-led government and Nepal Army.

Liaison officer killed in Gangapurna

Kathmandu, 30April: A liaison officer with an Iranian expedition died of altitude sickness on the 7485 meters high Gangapurna, Ministry of Tourism said.
Deepak Parsain died this week on the mountain.
Italian national Gipuesse Antonelli, 38, died Tuesday of suspected kidney failure on the *163 meters high Manaslu which was scaled by a Nepali and two Koreans Tuesday.
One Polish climber died this spring on Dhaulagiri.

Teacher shot dead in Bara

Kathmandu, 30 April: Teacher Pradip Timalshina was shot dead in Bara Thursday.
Three persons decamped after the shooting.


“We’re all surprised by the unne4cessary wild rumours of bad relations between them [former king and crown prince].

(Former press secretary Phadiraj Pathak, Annapurna Post, 30 April)

“Seek an explanation if she [Sujata KOirala] has done this [supported dismissal of army chief]. “

(Girija Prasad Koirala, Annapurna Post, 30 April)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Maoist secretariat meets to discuss political crisis

Kathmandu, 30 April: Maoist secretariat started meeting Thursday morning to discuss a political crisis after the Unified CPN (Maoist) decided to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal four month before he retires.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has opposed the Maoist move while CPN-UML has demanded the dismissal of Katawal and Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal.
There were also reports of a possible military coup.
Maoists are discussing party proposals.
Other parties also continued discussions.
Leaders of civil society met Prime Minister Prachanda Thursday and warned differences between parties will delay drafting a constitution.

Violent Tharu strike continues

Kathmandu, 30 April: Violent Tharu strike demanding de-linking from the Madeshi group continued for the 9th day Thursday.
Vehicles were moving under curfew along highways to ease shortages.
Two VDC offices were torched overnight in Dang.

Krishna Prasad Bhattarai discharged

Kathmandu, 30 April: Former Prime Minister Krishna Prasad Bhattarai was discharged from hospital Wednesday.
The founding member of main opposition Nepali Congress which he quit after the party took a republican posture was hospitalized for heart and lung infections.

Min Bahadur Rayamajhi appointed chief justice

Kathmandu, 30 April: Min Bahadur Rayamajhi has been appointed chief justice by the constitutional council.
Rayamajhi is the senior-most supreme court judge.
He succeeds Kedar Prasad Giri who is retiring after reaching superannuation age.

Gurkhas get support in British parliament

Kathmandu, 30 April: Opposition parties and some government lawmakers called on the British government Wednesday to ease restrictions on the right of Nepali Gurkha soldiers to settle in the UK, agency reports fro London reported.
The opposition is urging authorities to overturn a decision which loosened immigration restrictions for the Nepali Gurkha veterans.

Nepal is playing Qatar for third position in Elite Cup cricket tournament

Kathmandu, 30 April: Nepal is playing Qatar in Kuwait for third position in the U-19 Elite Cup cricket tournament.
Afghanistan ousted champions Nepal for the first time in four years Wednesday.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

No agreement on sacking of army chief

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 April: Main opposition Nepali Congress Tuesday stood firmly behind beleaguered Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal opposing Maoist determination to sack him for defying civilian authority.
Party central committee decided to come out on the street to support Katawal as YCL held demonstrations in the capital to support Maoist determination to sack Katawal.
Maoists, CPN-UML and Congress are to meet Wednesday to discuss the issue.
Nepali Congress central committee concluded Maoist determination to sack Katawal was an attempt to abort democracy and a strategy to snatch power.
Prime Minister Prachanda held inconclusive discussions with Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala.
CPN-UMl proposed Chatra B Gurung should be appointed army chief by sacking Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal and Katawal.
For the first time, the sacking of an army chief has taken serious political dimensions with reports of a military coup.

Strike continues in terai

Kathmandu, 28 April: Continuing strike in the terai has created shortages in various parts of the country.
Curfew was slapped in many districts to facilitate the movement of vehicles.
Twelve persons were injured in clashes Kapilbasthu.
Tharu leader Laxman Tharu was arrested in the capital Tuesday.

New schedule to write constitution

Kathmandu, 28 April; A draft of a proposed constitution should be ready now by 15 July for discussion in the CA according to a new schedule.
The draft should have been readied last week.
Only 12 months remains before the new constitution has to be drafted..
Eleven subject committees haven’t even submitted their proposals for a draft.
The committees haven’t analyzed suggestion s of 400,000 people collected during tours of districts.

Two infants killed in Dhading fire

Kathmandu 28 April: Two infants were killed in a fire in Dhading as a dry spell continues.
Forty-two houses were destroyed in Saptari causing damage of 10 million rupees.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Maoists. CPN-UML hold discussions on future of army chief

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 April: Maoist and main coalition partner CPN-UML leaders Tuesday morning began talks on Maoist proposal to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
CPN-UML has proposed sacking of Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal and Katawal as a solution.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has supported beleaguered Gen Katawal.
Maoist determination to oust Katawal has created a political crisis amid fears of a coup.


Two banks record good profits

Kathmandu, 28 April: Nepal Investment Bank recorded a Rs 650 million net profit in Q3 of the current fiscal year ending 13 April.
The bank recorded a Rs 475.5 million net profit in the corresponding period the previous year quarter.
Laxmi Bank recorded a Rs 139.9 million profit in Q3 compared to Rs 94.8 million profit in the corresponding period the previous year.

Maoists determined to sack Gen Katawal

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 27 April: Maoists expressed determination Monday to saxh Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal s a political crisis worsens.
Prime Minister Prachanda told a public meeting in Sindhuli the crisis will be resolved Tuesday..
Main coalition partner of Maoists suggested the sacking of Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa badal, Katawal and his likely successor Lt Gen Kul Bahadur Thapa to resolve he dispute.
CPN-UML and Maoists held discussions on the future of Gen Katawal.
CPN-UML decided Sunday after protracted discussions a decision on the future of Katawal should be decided by consensus between main opposition Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and Maoists.
Seventeen parties, including Congress, called for a consensus on the issue.
Congress s wil continue to disrupt parliamentary proceedings.
Congress central committee in meeting Tuesday to continue discussions,
Eight ambassadors meet Sher Bahadur Deuba to discuss the issue amid international concerns..
Congress again disrupted parliamentary proceedings Monday,

Three shot, injured in Birgunj

Kathmandu, 27 April: Three persons were shot and injured in Birgunj in continuing violence in terai Monday.
Two business owners of terai origin and a security guard were injured.
Assassins decamped on a motorcycle.

Tharu protests continue

Kathmandu, 27 April: Tharu protests continued for the sixth day Monday,
A night curfew was declared in Rautahat to facilitate the movement of vehicles amid shortage of essential goods mainly in urban centers.

No danger of swine flu in Nepal.

Kathmandu, 27 April: Health officials said there’s no danger of an outbreak of swine flu in Nepal immediately but an internal alert has been issued.Notices have been sent to be on alert, health officials said.
The disease broke our in Mexico and has spread to USA and Spain,

Sunday, April 26, 2009

CPN-UML opts for consensus on army chief dismissal; Maoists isolated

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 26 April: PM Prachanda and President Dr Ram Baran Yadav Yada held discussions on a political crisis after Maoists decided to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal for alleged disobedience to civil authority..
Prachanda also held discussions Sunday with Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood who returned Saturday after consultations from New Delhi Saturday amid fars of an armycoup denied by the army.
“It’s not an action against the army. It was an attempt to maintain civilian control over army which will be maintained through consensus,” Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai said.
He was present at the Prachanda, Sood meeting
CPN-UML standing committee finally decided Sunday only a tripartite meeting and understanding of Maoists, main opposition Nepali Congress and CPN-UML Katawal, General Secretary Ishwor Pokhrel said after a meeting of the main coalition partner of the Maoists in governemnt.
”One party cannot take a unilateral decision,” Pokehrel said, after a standing committee decision.
Main opposition Nepali Congress disrupted a meeting of the parliament for the third consecutive time lending support to the beleaguered army chief.
Maoists have been effectively isolated through internal and foreign pressures.

Two killed in Dhanusha for alleged attempt to abduct children

Kathmandu, 26: Two persons were killed for attempted kidnap of children at a village in Dhanusha Sunday, Radio Nepal reported.
Other details weren’t available.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

PM Prachanda cancels China visit; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 26 April: Prime Minister Prachanda has cancelled a scheduled visit to China that was to begin 2 May after a political crisis at home on Maoist determination to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
Nepal and China are discussing updating a peace and friendship treaty.
Chinese ambassador was summoned to Baluwatar Saturday and informed on the cancellation.
The China visit was cancelled amid reports of a possible military coup.
Maoist secretariat meeting Saturday backed a government decision to sack the army chief.
“Our conclusion is the party shouldn’t back out on action.,” party spokesman Dinanath Sharma said after the meeting and added the party will continue to seek support of other political parties.
“We’re ready to leave government for the supremacy of civilian rule,” Sharma added.
But Main opposition Nepali Congress that said it will come out on the streets to abort the Maoist plan and sought CPN-UML support to stop planned Maoist plans to sack the army chief.
But Sujata, daughter of party President Girija Prasad Koirala Thursday walked out of a party meeting charging the party was backing the army against the people by supporting Gen Katawal.
Even three days after Chairman Jhalanath Khanal cancelled his China visit to discuss the political crisis at home, there was no agreement within the CPN-UML standing committee Saturday to sack Gen Katawal.
The main coalition partner of the Maoists is split on the issue between a group led by Chairman Khanal pushing for a dismissal and another group led by KP Sharma Oli who is behind Gen Katawal.

Five firefighters killed in Gulmi

Kathmandu, 26 April: Five firefighters, including three women, were killed in a jungle fire in Gulmi Saturday.
Fire in Bara also killed a woman at a village in Bara where two others were injured.
A fire killed one person in Dang as well.
Thirteen soldiers were killed last week while trying to extinguish a fire in Ramechap.

Foreign Minister Yadav leaves for Havana

Kathmandu, 26 April: Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav flew for Havana Saturday to attend a conference of non-aligned countries from 29 to 30 April.
Before returning home, he will also attend a climate conference in Norway.
Yadav will also visit Brazil, Canada and France for bilateral talks with counterparts.

Security guard abducted in Parsa

Kathmandu, 26 April: A security guard was abducted Saturday in Parsa as violence continues in the terai.
Uam Bahadur Phuyal, a guard at Nabin Polymar Industries, was abducted.

Strike continues for fifth day

Kathmandu, 26 April: A crippling strike by Tharus demanding de-listing from Madeshi group continued for the fifth consecutive day Sunday.
The strike has created shortages in the capital and other parts of the country.
Administrators of five districts declared curfews along highways to facilitate the movement of vehicles.

Nepal in semi-finals of U-19 Elite Cup cricket tournament

Kathmandu, 26 April: Nepal entered the final of the U-19 ACC Elite Cup cricket tournament in Kuwait where it beat Sinagpore by three wickets Saturday.
Nepal chased a target of 172 runs which it reached in 45 overs.
Nepal beat Saudi Arabia and Malaysia in two previous matches.


“There’s a possibility [ military coup]. There are problems everywhere. From a personal point of view, the situation hasn’t improved.”

(Retired Maj Gen Pradip Pratap Bam Malla, Kantipur, 26 April)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Krishna Prasad Bhattarai serious

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 24 April: Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, the only surviving founding member of main opposition Nepali Congress, is in serious condition suffering lung and heart infections, a hospital where he is being treated said Friday.
Both his kidneys aren’t functioning.
He is undergoing treatment at a CCU in a hospital that specializes in heart diseases.
The former prime minister quit Npali Congress which he founded after Girija Prasad Koirala took the party on a republican movement abandoning constitutional monarchy and multi-party democracy.
Koirala has landed Nepal is a mess and brought Maoists to power by inviting foreign interference in a country in Asia that was never colonized.
Thailand in the other country that wasn’t run over by foreigners.
After 1990, Bhattarai led Nepali Congress to victory two times in parliamentary elections.
But Koirala conspired to bring down the Bhattarai governments forcing the then biggest party into opposition and establishing the supremacy of communists in Nepal.
Unlike most party leaders, Bhattarai never went into exile in India to fight the partyless panchayat regime toppled in 1990.
Bhattarai is 85.

Indian Ambassador flies home for consultations (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 April: Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood flew home for consultations with his government after extended consultations with Prime Minister Prachand Thursday.
Sood was among eight ambassadors summoned by Prachanda to brief them on an aborted attempt to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
India is playing a leading a foreign role in Nepali politics after parties, including Maoists invited them four years ago to intervene in Nepali politics.
Friday if the fourth anniversary of the ouster of the royal regime mainly with Indian, EU and US support of street protests at the invitation of Nepali political parties.
Nepali people are now suffering the consequences.
CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal began discussions with the main opposition and Maoists in government to resolve a political crisis after suddenly snapping a China visit..
The cancellation demonstrates the seriousness of the crisis created by Maoists by demanding an explanation from the army chief for perceived challenge of civilian authority by the army.

13 army personnel killed (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 April: At least 13 army personnel attempting to contain a forest fire around Ramechap district hospital were killed Thursday afternoon.
The hospital is atop a pine hill which caught fire in Nepal’s dry season in recent years..
Attempts are continuing to pull out bodies and control the fire, an army spokesman said.
There could be more casualties.
Rescue teams are being flown by helicopter to the district from the capital, the army said..
The fire started at one in the afternoon [7.15 GMT].
Fire engulfed the fire fighters from atop the hill as the teams were going to the hilltop.
It takes 20 minutes to reach Ramechap by helicopter from the capital.
Forest fires have been raging for more than one month destroying forests even in the Himalayan region for the first time.

Has further details of Nepal crisis

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: US Ambassador Nancy J Powell was not present at a meeting of Prime Minister Prachanda with eight ambassadors Thursday as reported earlier.
Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai was present at the collective meeting called by the prime minister; Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav at the meeting with foreign ambassadors.
The prime minister told the ambassadors an explanation from Gen Rukmangud Katawal was sought as the army chief was hesitating to give an explanation for defying government directives, according to Dr Bhattarai.
CPN-UML Chairman Jhanalnath Khanal began discussions with party leaders of the standoff between the government and the army immediately after cutting short his China visit.
He drove straight to the party office from the airport Thursday from the airport for discussions with party leaders.
An informal meeting of central committee will be held Friday along with a meeting of the standing committee.
Deep differences have surfaced in the party on how to handle the crisis; the Khanal faction first support action against the army chief who told the government his dismissal four months before his term expires will be illegal.
Gen Katawal told the government in a letter only the president can dismiss him.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

10,934 Bhutanese refugees resettled in USA

Kathmandu, 23 April: Altogether 10,934 Bhutanese refugees from Nepal have been resettled in USA in a programme launched two years ago, UN said.
The scheme continues.
Altogether 12,338 refugees have so been resettled from camps in east Nepal.
Another 675 refugees have gone to Australia, 220 to New Zealand, 161 to Denmark, 148 to Canada and 91 to the Netherlands.

Foreign minister Yadav leaving for Cuba

Kathmandu, 23 April: Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav leaves for Cuba Saturday to attend a conference of foreign ministers of non-aligned countries.
Yadav will also visit Belgium, Canada and Norway.
He is attending an UN conference on climate change in Norway.

Prachanda summons ambassadors

Kathmandu, 23 April: Prime Minister Prachanda invited eight ambassadors from EU, USA, India and China and briefed them on latest developments after a Maoist attempt to sack Army Chief Gen Rokmangud Katawal was aborted through national and international pressure.
They advised national understanding.
Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood stayed for another 45 minutes at the end of the meeting.

Congress and other parties inciting president to stage coup

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 April: Prime Minister and Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda said Wednesday Congress and other parties are inciting a ceremonial president to stage a military coup, Rajdhani reports.
According to Maoist secretariat member Deb Gurung Prime Minister told a secretariat meeting a conspiracy to repeat a December 1960 coup will be smashed.
Prachanda said repeated meetings of Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal with the president shouldn’t be taken lightly.
“A government official should hold a dialogue on differences with government. The tendency of the army chief to hold discussions with a ceremonial president by ignoring an executive prime minister is extremely dangerous,” Law Minister Gurung quoting the prime minister told Rajdhani.
Prachanda said political parties are inciting the president ot take an extreme action.
Gurung said the party felt Congress is inciting the president to impose military rule.
Another Maoist leader CP Gajurel said the Maoist secretariat meeting Wednesday concluded a written memo of the president to the prime minister was an attempt to invite a serious accident.


BoK records Rs 332.9m net profit

Kathmandu, 23 April: Bank of Kathmandu (BoK) recorded a Rs 322.9 million net in Q3 of the current fiscal year ending 13 April, the bank said.
The bank recorded a Rs 238.3 million profit in the corresponding previous year quarter.


“For Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, this has become a season of lamentations. Despite the constitution having vested executive powers on him, our premier bewailed the other day, he feels utterly powerless. He’s been playing that variation for quite a while.”

(Maila Baje, People’s Review, 23 April)

“It [Mustang] was indeed one of the most beautiful areas I have seen in Nepal.”

(US Ambassador Nancy J. Powell after visiting the trans-Himalayan district adjoining Tibet)

“The prime minister has made Army Chief Rukmangud Katawal retiring in three months into a hero.”

(Local Development Minister Ram Chandra Jha, Nepal Samacharpatra, 23 April)

EB ambassador, PM Prachanda hold discussions; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 April: EU ambassadors based in Kathmandu Thursday morning collectively held discussions with Prime Minister Prachanda following pressure on the Maoist-led government to sack with restraint in implementing a threat to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
EU ambassadors met Prachanda after party foreign advisor CP Gajurel revealed Wednesday the beleaguered government was also pressurized by India and USA.
They discussed the political impasse and its impact on the peace process following a standoff between the government, political parties and the army.
Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood met the prime minister almost daily after which the government announced Wednesday it will act on its threat to dismiss Katawal only after ‘studying’ his written response for an explanation within 24 hours on his ‘defiance’ of civilian orders.
Sood held discussions with the prime minister again Thursday.
The army chief told the government politely only the president and not the government could dismiss him.
In another embarrassing retreat, Prachanda also assured all political parties represented in parliament he will now act against the army chief only through ‘consensus’.
“Any decision taken will be based on consensus,” Prachanda said after first threatening unilateral action.
The standoff between The Maoist-led government and army has split CPN-UML, the main coalition partner of the Maoists in government.
A party faction led by Chairman Jhalanath Khanal and Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam were firmly behind the government; but a strong and influential section led KP Sharma Oli, close to min opposition Nepali Congress, opposed the Maoist move.
Dr Baburam Bhattarai who has taken a leading role to sack Katawal, met Oli Thursday to seek support to sack the army chief.
Following the split in CPN-UML, Khanal is returning from China Thursday, cutting short his 10-day visit, to discuss a common approach to the party and government crisis.
Prachanda will encounter strong pressure from within the party to implement his threat to dismiss Katawal after mobilizing Maoists on the streets against the army.
Maoists are now in am embarrassing situation; they have to satisfy the state army and 19,000 plus PLA combatants under watch by UN in 28 camps for integration and assimilation in society and the state army.
Main opposition Nepali Congress parliamentary party is meeting ahead of a regular session of parliament Thursday to discuss future strategy to against the Maoist-led government.
The party took a leading role in supporting the army against Maoists who have staged a temporary retreat after creating a political crisis.
Direct confrontation has for the first time come out publicly between the president and the prime minister with Maoists accusing the former Nepali activist of attempting to usurp limited powers of a constitutional head of state.
Even as Gen Katawal said only the president can dismiss him, 16 parties have asked President Dr Ram Baran Yadav to intervene constitutionally on behalf of the army.

UNMIN chief, PM hold discussions

Kathmandu, 23 April: UNMIN Chief Karin Landgren held general discussions with Prime Minister Prachanda Thursday morning before leaving for New York Friday.
Discussions were held on the peace process, role of UN and delayed integration of Maoist combatants in the state army and society.
UN security council is discussing Nepal next week.
Mandate of UNMIN also ends in July.

Terai strike continues for second day

Kathmandu, 23 April: A renewed strike by Tharus demanding delisting from Madeshi ethnic group paralyzed life in the south for the second consecutive day Thursday.
Demonstrators Wednesday vandalized a UN vehicle which also defied the strike call.
Demonstrators continued to vandalize vehicles that defied the strike Thursday.

Nepal plays Malaysia in Elite Cup cricket tournament

Kathmandu, 23 April: Nepal meets Malaysia Thursday in the U-19 ACC Elite Cup cricket tournament hosted by Kuwait.
Nepal beat Saudi Arabia in its first outing Wednesday.
Nepal has lifted the cup four times.

Chairman Nemwang convenes meeting of constitution drafting committees

Kathmandu, 23 April: CA Chairman Subash Nemwang has called a meeting Thursday of chairmen of 11 subject committees of drafting a constitution after delay in preparing preliminary drafts.
The committees were asked to submit drafts by Thursday to a main constitution drafting committee headed by Madhav Kumar Nepal.
The drafts weren’t ready by Wednesday.
A preliminary draft of a proposed basic law should have been prepared by Friday for discussion.
Nemwang will discuss new schedules for drafting a delayed constitution that has to be prepared by May 1010.
Delay in drafting constitution will create a political crisis.
Differences between major political parties has also led to delay in preparing a draft of the constitution.
The committees haven’t analyzed and prepared a synopsis of 400,000 suggestions received from the public.

Maoist students abuse, disgrace TU vice-chancellor, rector

Kathmandu, 23 April: Maoist students Wednesday disgraced and abused TU Vice-Chancellor Dr Madhav Raj Sharma and Rector Prof Surya Lal Amatya by smearing their faces black.
Students were protesting a hike in examination fees after nearly two decades.
Authorities said fees were hiked to meet growing expenses.


Everest Bank Ltd records Rs 447.9m net profit

Kathmandu, 23 April: Everest Bank Ltd, a joint venture with Punjab National Bank, announced a record Rs 447.9 million net profit at the end of Q3 ending 13 April.
The bank recorded a Rs 299.4 million profit in the corresponding previous year quarter.

ADBL to sell 437,400 promoter shares of Nepal SBI Bank Ltd

Kathmandu, 23 April: Agriculture Development Bank LTD (ADBL) will sell 437,400 promoter ordinary shares it holds of Nepal SBI Bank Ltd at least Rs 780 per share.
Par value of each share is Rs 100.
Preference will be given to investors who make a better offer.
Advertisement has been placed for sealed bids.

Maoists caught in a fix

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: Maoists have been isolated in their high profile attempt to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katwal for allegedly challenging the civilian authority over the state army—a charge rejected by Gen Katawal.
Instead of sacking the chief, a cabinet meeting first distributed copies of a reply of the general defending himself for ‘study’ members of the council of ministers for final decision.
Prime Minister Prachanda then called a meeting of all parties in parliament that rejected the government’s call for support to sack the top army general
CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal cut short his 10-day China visit and is scheduled to return home Thursday.
Before the meeting convened by Maoists, a meeting of 17 parties convened by main opposition Nepali Congress backed the army having serious implications of national politics.
Khanal was scheduled to return home only Sunday.
The coalition partner of Maoists is split vertically with Madhav Kumar Nepal and KP Sharma Oli faction coming openly coming out against Maoist behaviour.
Khanal and deputy Prime Minister Bamdeb Gautam have adopted a soft stance in favour Maoists.
Maoists and Nepali Congress organized demonstrations against and in favour of the general.
Maoist foreign expert CP Gajurel said India, USA pressurized government in favour of Gen Katawal.

Nepal defeats Saudi Arabia in Acc U-19 cricket tournament

Kathmandu, 22 April: Nepal defeated Saudi Arabia Wednesday by 137 runs in a ACC U-19 Elite Cup cricket tournament in Kuwait.
The match was Nepal’s first outing in the tournament.
Nepal has lifted the championship trophy four consecutive times.
Nepal plays Hong Kong Friday.

Tharus smash UN vehicles

Kathmandu, 22 April: Tharus in renewed protests also smashed UN vehicles during a renewed strike in the terai Wednesday.
The community renewed protests after one month pressing six demands, including de-linking from the Madeshi group.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Maoist secretariat urges further study of army chief’s reply (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: An emergency meeting of Maoist secretariat Wednesday asked the government to decide on the future of Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal only after further study of his written response to a charge of defying government order, leader CP Gajurel said.
No deadline was set for the study.
The meeting also objected to the intervention of the president on the issue on behalf of the army chief.
Gajurel admitted the government came under intense foreign pressure as well
The meeting decided to bring to bring people on a streets to support a Maoist action against Gen Katawal.

Jhalanath Khanal meets Chinese leaders

Kathmandu, 22 April: A visiting delegation headed by CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal on Tuesday called on senior leader of Chinese Communist Party (CPC) Li Chang Chun at Great Hall of he People in Beijing, RSS reports.
On the occasion, Chairperson Khanal presented his views about the transitional political situation of Nepal.
Likewise, on Monday the visiting delegation held discussions with Chief of International Department of CPC and Minister Wang Jiarui about relations between two political parties.
The five-member CPN-UML team is on China visit at the invitation of CPC.

Two broadsheets from Friday

Kathmandu, 22 April: Hemraj Geywali, Chairman of Nepal Republic Media (P) Ltd is launching two newspapers from the capital Friday after selling off all his interests in Kantipur publications.
Prateek Pradhan is group editor of English daily Republica and vernacular daily Nagarik.
Ameet Dhakal is Editor-in-Chief of Republica and Narayan Wagle is Chief Editor of Nagarik.


ADBL going public

Kathmandu, 22 April: Agriculture Development Bank Ltd (ADBL) is raising Rs 960 million buy selling 96,00, 000 shares with par value of Rs 100 per share.
Ace Development Bank Ltd has been appointed issue manager.


“The hue and cry over the explanation sought by government from one official is surprising.”

(CPN-UML General Secretary Ishwor Pokhrel in party mouthpiece Budhabar, 22 April)

“There should be national consensus within the country for important treaties. Government will take a decision [on signing a new friendship treaty with China] after seriously considering all serious concerns.”

(Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav, Janaastha, 22 April)

“For a constitutional president to be entangled in politics is against the spirit of the interim constitution [on presidential directive to prime minister on army chief]. Involvement of a minor issue is also illegal as well.”

(Maoist lawmaker Khiklal Debkota in Maoist mouthpiece Janadisha, 22 April)

President, PM hold discussions on political crisis

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav and Prime Minister Prachanda held discussions on a political crisis that has publicly surfaced following a Maoist threat to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
The prime minister told reporters after the meeting the discussions were fruitful
The president, during the meeting, explained the concerns of 16 political parties expressed to him Tuesday, press advisor Rajendra Dahal of the president said.
Maoist secretariat meeting began immediately after.
The secretariat meeting Tuesday demanded dismissal of Gen Katawal.
The cabinet meeting is scheduled immediately after the secretariat meeting. .
CPN-UML ministers Wednesday decided to support Maoists in government, Acting party Chairman and Home Minister Babdeb Gautam said,
Gautam said he held discussions with Chairman Jhalanath Khanal over telephone in China.
CPN-UML is divided between supporters and critics of Maoists.
Former Party Chief Madhav Kumar Nepal told the prime minister over telephone not to take a hasty decision on the army chief.
A strong faction of the party opposed the Maoist threat in and outside parliament Tuesday.

Constitutional drafting committee meets

Kathmandu, 22 April: A constitution drafting committee meeting began Wednesday to receive reports for a preliminary draft of 11 subject committees.
The committee had asked members to submit their analysis of 400,000 public suggestions by Wednesday.

Tharu strike paralyzes life in terai

Kathmandu, 22 April: First reports from terai districts said a resumed strike by Tharus has paralyzed life in the south Wednesday.
Schools, markets and industries in the industries have been closed after an indefinite strike was resumed after a one-month break.
Movement of vehicles has also been disrupted.

President’s memo to prime minister; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: Details of a memo sent by President Dr Ram Baran Yadav to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal.
“Reforms of Nepal Army and democratization has been sidelined for half a century. Today, from the point of view of political priority, the management of the combatants in cantonments should be prioritized more than army reforms.
“It will be proper to create an atmosphere of political understanding in the spirit of the constitution while taking decisions on Nepal Army reforms or other related issues.
“At the same time, the management of combatants should be pushed in priority basis,” the memo said according to published reports.
Government Spokesman Krishna Bahadur Mahara said,” President can give advice. We’ve taken that positively. But it is for the government to accept or reject the advise. Government takes the final decision.”
Maoist-affiliated organizations are continuing street protests nation-wide Wednesday to urge government to sack Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
Maoists came out on the streets Tuesday evening in the capital.
“The reply of the army chief [submitted to the office of council of minister’s Tuesday] has no clarification. We’ve taken it as an anti-government argument,” Maoist leader CP Gajurel told Kantipur.
The army chief’s reply doesn’t explain recruitment of soldiers to fill in vacancies or the reinstatement of eight brigadier generals.

Suspected Bhutanese Maoists shoot dead Bhutanese refugee

Kathmandu, 22 April: Suspected Bhutanese Maoists overnight shot dead a Bhutanese refugee at a camp in Beldangi, Jhapa, overnight, police said.
Two suspects have been arrested.
Shanti Ram was shot dead in the camp managed by the UNHCR.

President urges prime minister not to sack army chief

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 22 April: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav, who is also supreme commander-in-chief of Nepal Army, has asked Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal not to dismiss Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal ‘bypassing constitutional and legal provisions’.
The president sent a memo of his Tuesday talks with the prime minister for record, the president’s press advisor Rajendra Dahal said.
The president and prime minister are to meet Wednesday before a cabinet which will discuss Maoist threat to sack the army chief.
Sixteen parties Tuesday also asked the president to intervene and take constitutional measures to stop the dismissal.
Government came under international pressure to act with restraint.
The cabinet meeting couldn’t be held Tuesday after strong protests against the Maoist threat to sack the army chief by coalition partners CPN-UML and MJF.
Maoist affiliated organizations took to the streets in the capital Tuesday to support the Maoist threat.
“This is an attempt to weaken security agency in an attempt to capture power,” Congress spokesman Arjun Narsingh KC said.
One lawyer charged the Maoists were attempting to influence the supreme court considering a government request to reconsider an earlier decision asking the defence ministry to reinstate eight brigadier generals.
One of the Maoist charge against the army chief was he challenged a government order to terminate the tenure of eight brigadiers at the apex court.
“How can the government sek an explanation on a sub-judice case? It is aimed at pressurizing an apex court,” lawyer Dr Bhimarjun Acharya said. ow How Nnnn

No meeting of constitutional council to appoint new chief justice

Kathmandu, 22 April: A meeting of the constitutional council to appoint a new chief justice of the supreme court’s wasn’t held as scheduled Tuesday.
Grave differences have surfaced between the Maoists leading government and the main opposition Nepali Congress.
The latest differences following the Maoist threat to sack the army chief allegedly for disobeying directives and orders of an elected civilian government—a charge denied by the chief in a written reply to the council of ministers Tuesday.
Chief Justice Kedar Prasad Giri retires 4 May.
Opposition leader Girija Prasad Koirala is also member of the council.
Koirala, who is suffering lung infection, has been asked to rest for two weeks.

Tharus to re-launch protests from Wednesday

Kathmandu, 22 April: Tharu community in the terai announced re-launch of their anti-governments from Wednesday with an indefinite strike in 22 southern districts.
Community leader Laxman Tharu charged government was blind to its demands charging previous agreements hadn’t been met.
Tharus are demanding de-listing from the Madeshi group.

Record cricket match at foot of Mt Everest

Kathmandu, 22 April: A British team recorded history Tuesday by playing a Twenty20 cricket match at Gorakshep at 12,000 feet below Mt Everest—the highest point where such a match was ever played.
The attempt had health hazards with players prone to altitude sickness by playing a strenuous match in the rarefied air.
A team named after Sir Edmund Hillary defeated another team named after Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, the first conquers of Everest, by 35 runs.
The 55-member group descends to lower camps Wednesday.

PM begins week-long China visit

Kathmandu, 22 April: Prime Minister Prachanda begins a nine-day official China visit 2 May, Kantipur reports.
He will begin the visit from Tibet and end it is Hong Kong.
He will inspect the Three Gorges Dam and visit Shanghai as well.
The agenda for the visit is still being prepared.


$25.6m ADB grant

Kathmandu, 22 April: Asian Development Bank (ADB) has released $25.6 million to held last year’s flood victims to revive the economy.
Nearly 300,000 persons were affected by floods in east and west Nepal.
Flood damage is estimated as $88 million.
Victims of the Kosi floods in Nepal continued their protests Tuesday even after the government offered a Rs 2 billion relief package,
Local administration in Sunsari issued prohibitory orders banning protests along highways in the district this week to facilitate the movement of vehicles.

No cabinet meeting to discuss threatened dismissal of army chief (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 April: A scheduled meeting of the cabinet to discuss the threatened dismissal of Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal couldn’t be held after ruling parties opposed the Maoist threat.
Ruling parties CPN-UML and MJF supported the main Nepali Congress in opposing the Maoist threat.
The two largest coalition partners of the Maoists joined the main opposition which gheraoed the parliament forum Tuesday forcing its adjournment.
Before the gherao, Sher Bahadur Deuba charged the Maoist threat was ‘ill-intentioned’.
Leaders of 16 political parties met President Dr Ram Baran Yadav and asked him to use ‘constitutional powers’ to prevent the threatened action.
The parties earlier concluded the Maoist move was objectionable.
Following a Congress emergency central committee meeting, the party decided to come out on the streets against the Maoist threat, central committee member Gobinda Raj Joshi said.
Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood held discussions with Prime
Minister Prachanda as Communication Minister
Krishna Bahadur Mahara said there were reports foreign governments opposed the Maoist threat.
One report said the Indian foreign ministry in New Delhi discussed developments at an emergency meeting.
Maoists are isolated on the issue.
The army chief submitted a written to Maoist charges not to the defence ministry which requested it but to the council of ministers.
Maoist leaders still attempted to garner support in meetings with top
CPN-UML leader Madhav Kumar Nepal in the absence of Chairman Jhalanath Khanal who is in China.

Army chief denies charges; Nepali Congress backs chief (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 April: Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal Tuesday denied defence ministry charge he was challenging civilian authority over Nepal Army and order of an elected governemnt.
The charges were denied in a written reply delivered to the Office of the Council of Ministers by Brig Gen Rajendra Khatri.
The Maoist-led government and defence ministry demanded an explanation Monday within 24 hours.
The cabinet is meeting Tuesday to discuss the reply.
Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai said the army chief will be sacked if the answer to the charges aren’t satisfactory.
An emergency central committee of main opposition Nepali Congress concluded the Maoist initiative was an attack on democracy which will be countered by the party.
The party also decided to boycott parliament sessions until the decision isn’t rectified.
The main opposition has backed the beleaguered army chief.
The party has called an all-party meeting to discuss the crisis; Maoists haven’t been invited to the meeting.
Relations between Maoists in government and Nepal Army have soured.
The army challenged in court a government decision to extend the tenure of eight brigadier generals and boycotted the 8th national games after PLA was included in the sporting event after Prime Minister Prachanda included the former rebels combatants after formal inauguration.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has charged Maoists for attempting to demoralize the state army as well.


Monday, April 20, 2009

Army chief furnishing written explanation

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 21 April: Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal is submitting a written reply to the defence ministry Tuesday demand for an explanation for defying government directives and decisions triggering a crisis,
Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai has said the chief will be sacked if the reply isn’t satisfactory.
The army chief has also been charged for not helping the peace process and politicking.
A Maoist secretariat meeting Tuesday morning supported the Maoist action.
But main opposition Nepali Congress delegation led by Acting President Sushil Koirala met President Ram BaranYadav and asked him to intervene on behalf of the army chief.
Ailing party President Girija Prasad Koirala was absent.
Nepali Congress Monday decided to boycott parliament indefinitely and stood behind the beleaguered chief charging Maoists for attempting to destroy the army structure.
Parliamentis scheduled to meet Tuesday afternoon.
Congress has also called a meeting of all parties, excluding Maoists, to discuss the crisis Tuesday.

Policeman shot and injured in Dhanusha

Kathmandu, 21 April: A policeman on patrol was shot and injured in Mahendranagar, Dhanusha, oversight.
Violence continues in the troubled terai.

One killed in police firing, other details

Kathmandu, 21 April: One person was killed in a police firing in Simara Monday when police tried to control an irate mob Monday.
The mob set fire to three trippers after a child was overrun and killed.
Two persons were killed, including a child, in Siraha during wedding celebrations overnight.


“I have heard he [Sujit BK, alleged killer of CPN-UML activist] went to Baluwatar. But I don’t know whether be went to the official residence of the prime minister there.”

(Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam, Nayapatrika, 21 April)

Army Chief to be sacked if Maoists not satisfied with explanation, Nepali Congress backs army (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 April: Army Chief Gen.Rukmangud Katawal will be sacked in the next 24 hours if the Maoist-led government isn’t satisfied with an explanation for defiance of government orders, Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai and Communication Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara said and suggested.
Dr Bhattarai said in Nepalgunj Monday Katawal will be sacked if a reply isn’t satisfactory.
Main opposition Nepali Congress backed the state army by announcing an indefinite boycott of parliament.
A grave political crisis has surfaced
Defence ministry asked the top army chief to furnish a reply Monday.
Mahara charged Nepal Army had defied government by challenging in the supreme court a government order to terminate services of eight brigadier generals and also by boycotting the 8th national games after PLA participated in the last moment.
Prime Minister Prachanda raised the issued with President Dr Ram Baran Yadav at a hasty meeting.
Nepali Congress Vice-President Ram Chandra Paudel told parliament Maoists were attempting to ‘smash and weaken’ state institutions, including the army.
The latest clash with the army surfaced after the defence ministry
was working to an amend an army act to retire officers after 30 years of service.
This means an officer would be retired at 48 years of age.
The army protested the move.
It takes an officer 35 years to reach the top army job.

Krishna Prasad Bhattarai admitted to hospital

Kathmandu, 20 April: Former Prime Minister Krishna Prasad Bhattarai was admitted to a hospital Monday after complaining of chest pains.
Maoist leader Mohan Krishna Baidya Kiran was admitted to the same hospital specializing in treatment of heart disease.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Govt. pushing second phase talks with rebel groups

Kathmandu, 19 April: Peace Minister Janardhan Sharma Prabhakar Sunday said government will start second phase of talks with various rebel groups soon.
Sharma said negotiations had been delayed because of inter-ministerial talks.
Peace and home ministries were coordinating approaches, he said.
Talks have so far been held with 10 groups.
A cabinet meeting was held Sunday.
The meeting discussed relief for victims of last year’s Kosi floods
Victims are disrupting movement of vehicles in Sunsari for the last 11 days.

Two priests killed in Kaski

Kathmandu, 19 April: Two priests were murdered overnight in Kaski.
Harihar Swami who had been living in a cave for 16 years and was working as a priest was killed and Rs 50,000 was stolen.
Mukti Prasad Pokhrel, a priest at a Pokhara temple, was also murdered Saturday.
Six have been taken into custody for investigation.

Parliament session normal

Kathmandu, 19 April: Parliament session resumed for the second time without interruption Sunday.
Maoists came to an agreement to run proceedings smoothly last week.
Janamorcha Nepal staged a protest against federalism in front of parliament and presented a memorandum to President Dr Ram Baran Yadav against a federal state structure.
Protests were held by the party at nine points in the capital.
Two bills were to be presented in the legislature.

HLCRS commission formed without consensus: Nepali Congress

Kathmandu, 19 April: Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala said Sunday government formed a high-level commission for restructuring of the state [HLCRS] without consultation.
Koirala said the commission should have been formed by consensus as agreed.
Main opposition Nepali Congress held informal discussions on the formation of the commission last week.
TMLP also protested the formation of the commission Sunday.
The commission, critics said, was formed even as constitution drafting committees haven’t submitted drafts of a new state structure.
Work of drafting a constitution could be adversely affected, critics charged.
Government, they charged, was interfering in the work of constitution drafting committees.

Mandate of a parliamentary committee extended

Kathmandu, 19 April: The mandate of a parliamentary committee to monitor whether Maoists had returned seized assets has been extended by three months.
Political parties, including Nepali Congress, formed the committee to monitor whether nine demands have been met by Maoists.
Congress is demanding fulfillment of demands as condition for cooperation.

Murder to CPN-UML activist to be raised at Nepal Development Forum meeting

Kathmandu, 19 April: Human rights workers will raise the issue of the murder of CPN-UML activist at a meeting of Nepal Development Forum in the capital beginning from 12 May, Kantipur reports.
CPN-UML has accused Maoists for the murder.
Rights workers, in the first phase of the campaign, have already informed donors.
“Political parties on an understanding are remaining shamelessly silent to murder of citizens,” rights activist Sushil Pyakhurel said. “We are appealing to the international community to end the culture of impunity.”
Human rights workers are pressuring the international community not to assist a government protecting an alleged culprit.
[CPN-UML have charged Sunil BK for the murder of an activist in Butwal.]

Bam Bahadur and Home Bahadur BK killed in bomb explosion

Kathmandu, 19 April: Two brothers were killed Saturday in an explosion of a abandoned bomb in a jungle in Gulmi where they had gone foraging.
Bam Bahadur and Hom Bahadur BK died while they played with an abandoned bomb in a jungle near their home.
Landmines haven’t been completely de-mined and bombs have been abandoned during the 10-year Maoist people’s war killing dozens even after the restoration of peace.

Ramesh Nath Pandey undergoes second angioplasty in two months

Kathmandu, 19 April: Foreign minister in the royal regime Ramesh Nath Pandey underwent a second angioplasty in two months at a Kathmandu hospital, family sources said.

Superannuation in army after 30 years of service

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 April: Government is doing homework to superannuate army personnel after 30 years of service, Rajdhani reports.
Government is preparing to retire personnel with long years of service even while supreme court overturned a government decision to terminate services of eight brigadier generals.
Defence ministry is amending a military act to enforce the decision.
It takes 35 years for an army officer to become army chief after entering service.
Army is dissatisfied.
No such provision exists in any country.
“Such rule won’t be acceptable to the army because it’s impractical. This will create shortage of trained personnel in the army,” an official said.
There are 10 officer ranks in the army while there are only seven ranks in Nepal Police and Armed Police Force.
Nepal Army has told government the new law must be approved by parliament.
“UN foreseen development will take place in Nepal if the decision is implemented,” warned retired Brig Gen Keshar Bahadur Bhandari.
Age of superannuation is being reduced from 30 to 27years in Nepal police, Rajdhani reports.
“This is an attempt of Maoists to capture security agencies in the name of providing employment to youth and able,” said Deshantar in a headline.

Maoist-led govt. appoints younger brother of Jhalanath Khanal to Social Welfare Council

Kathmandu, 19 April: Dataram Khanal, younger brother of CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal has been reappointed Vice-Chairman of Social Welfare Council from where he was evicted by the government recently on charge of irregularities, Deshantar reports.
The Maoists oversee the work of the council.
Dataram was appointed immediately after the CPN-UML chairman said his party will continue in government.
The younger Khanal was sacked by the Maoist-led government.

Min Bahadur Rayamajhi to be chief justice

Kathmandu, 19 April: Senior-most supreme court judge Min Bahadur Rayamajhi will be appointed chief justice to succeed Kedar Prasad Giri who is retiring, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
The newspaper quoted Giri as saying Rayamajhi will be his successor.


“Right now, there’s a struggle ongoing between supporters of a parliamentary republic and people’s republic. But Maoists are committed to the establishment of a people’s republic.”

(Maoist leader Narayan Kazi Shrestha, Janadisha, 19 April)

“Our birthplace is a jail. There’s no hospital for treatment or a road to travel to get out.”

(Chandra Bahadur Shahi, resident of remote hill district Dolpa, Annapurna Post, 19 April)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Two more border posts along Nepal-Tibet border being reopened

Kathmandu, 19 April; China has agreed to open two more border posts are being opened along Nepal-Tibet border, published reports said.
Agreement was reached during Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav’s just concluded China visit.
The posts are being opened in Dolpa and Mugu; five border posts are now open.

Differences surface between UNDP, NHRC

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 April: Signature dispute to upgrade the capacity of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has surfaced between UNDP and NHRC, Robin Giri reports in Annapurna Post.
The second phase of the project is in dispute.
The first phase of the project is now being implemented for the last seven years.
Differences have surfaced on the involvement of the UN High Commission for Human Rights (OHCHR) in the Rs 160 million second phase project which should have been signed one year ago.
UNDP Country Director insists OHCHR should be involved. Earlier agreement was between UNDP and NHRC without involvement of OHCHR.
NHRC expressed disagreement after UNDP said a tripartite agreement should be signed between UNDP, OHCHR and NHRC.
Spokesman of NHRC Gauri Pradhan said a tripartite agreement isn’t acceptable to the commission.
“The ball is now in UNDP’s court,” Pradhan said.
A commission source said OHCHR is attempting to prolong its stay in Nepal.

Iraq out of bounds for Nepali workers

Kathmandu, 19 April: Iraq will be out of bounds for Nepalis, Annapurna Post reports.
This will be clearly mentioned in one million passports being issued by the foreign ministry.
The new passports are being issued this month.
Unofficial reports say nearly 100,000 Nepalis are currently working in Iraq.


Kathmandu, 19 April: Even with nominal government involvement, potato production has risen dramatically, Kantipur reports.
Potato has become a staple diet of people in the hill and Himalayan regions.
The country produced 748,000 metric tons potato in 1993/94; production reached 2.54 metric tons in 2007/08.
“Demand and price are increasing; that’s why production is increasing,” Agriculture Ministry Spokesman Hari Dahal said.


“It would not auger well for the nation if the PLA is integrated with the Nepal Army. The PLA might have to fight yet another was to establish rights of the people.”

(Dissident Maoist leader Matrika Yadav, The Himalayan Times, 19 April)

“Labour union affiliated with Maoists running the government is breaking the law and mercilessly attacking police [in casinos].”

(Home Minister Bamdev Gautam, Kantipur, 19 April)

No need of UNMIN if integration is completed by June

Kathmandu, 18 April: There’s no need to extend the mandate of UNMIN if the integration of PLA is completed with Nepal Army by June.
Foreign Advisor Hira Bahadur Thapa of the prime minister said this after visiting British Minister Under Secretary for Defence Kevin Jones held discussions with Prachanda Saturday.
UNMIN mandate ends in June.
The mandate has been extended two times.

Prohibitory order issued in Sunsari

Kathmandu, 18 April: Sunsri district administration Saturday issued prohibitory orders along highways in the terai district where victims of last year’s Kosi river floods have been demanding compensation.
A ban of strikes and demonstrations aims to restore movement of vehicles disturbed since 10 days.

Chairman Subash Nemwang asks for conclusions within three days

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 April: CA Chairman Subash Nemwang Saturday asked chairmen of 11 subject committees of the assembly and 24 party whips to submit conclusions of public opinion gathered for drafting a constitution.
The process has been delayed; a preliminary draft was to be submitted 23 April for discussion within 23 April to the CA.
There’s no agreement between major political parties on even a form of government—presidential or parliamentary.
Maoist hardliners want to impose a communist system.
Committees that visited districts received suggestions from 500,000 people.
CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal called for cooperation between political parties to draft a constitution within the May 1010 deadline amid concerns the constitution may not be drafted within the deadline.
Khanal left for China Saturday leading a five-member party delegation.
Even if a constitution is drafted, it looks increasingly likely the basic law will be imposed by political parties without popular participation.
Present ruling parties drafted the 1990 constitution that has been thrown in the dustbin.
Ruling parties are attempting to create an impression then King Birendra gifted the 1990 constitution.
Chairman of the constitution drafting committee Madhav Kumar Nepal, defeated from two constituencies in the 10 April 2008 CA elections, also helped draft the constitution.

Foreign minister Upendra Yadav returns

Kathmandu, 18 April: Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav returned home Saturday after visits of China and Indonesia.
He didn’t visit North Korea as originally expected.
Yadav paved the way for PM Prachanda’s China visit in May.

Maoist secretariat meeting postpone until Tuesday

Kathmandu, 18April: A Maoist secretariat meeting scheduled for Saturday was postponed until Tuesday without serious discussion..
The party said most leaders were not available in the capital for the meeting.

Friday, April 17, 2009

BJP to re-craft Nepal policy [Excerpts]

Kathmandu, 18 April: In this season of national elections in India, many issues including security, religion and development have been hotly debated, But foreign policy has largely been confined to manifestos, Dinesh Wagle reports in The Kathmandu Post from New Delhi.
Among major parties, Bharitiya Janata Party (BJP) manifesto is more elaborate on foreign policy. It has Nepal policy clearly stressed. The party blames the ruling United Progressive Alliance for ‘biases that have influenced’ Indian responses to Nepal in the past years.
“The BJP will recraft India’s Nepal policy to rid it of the UPA’s biases that have influenced India’s response to events in Nepal with which our country shares a common civilisational and cultural history,” says the manifesto.
“India-Nepal relations must be based on friendship, mutual cooperation and harmony of interests, says BJP whose leader L.K.Advani aspires to lead the next government.
“Towards this end, existing arrangements will be reviewed and revised bearing in mind mutual interests and benefits on basis of dialogue. The BJP would like to see Nepal emerge as a stable, prosperous country, and will strike to strengthen age-old fraternal ties.”
The ruling Congress party, on the other hand, hardly mentions a South Asia policy.
What about BJP’s vow to’ rid’ Nepal policy ‘of UPA’s biases’ and review ‘existing arrangements’?
Does that man BJP, if it comes to power, will push for revival of monarchy and reversal of secularism in Nepal?
“No, no, “ said N.N.Jha who contributed to the BJP manifesto.
“Those things are to be entirely determined by the people of Nepal. The review of existing arrangements is for the1950 peace and friendship treaty, which Nepal has been seeking to review. But we will have to hear more from Nepal on specifics if we come to power.”

After Maoist assaults, British minister calls for judiciary free from interference

By Bhola B Rana .

Kathmandu, 18 April: British Under Secretary of State for Defence and Minister for Veterans Kevin Jones said Saturday United Kingdom was ready ‘ to support’ in the integration of the PLA and Nepal Army, according to the British embassy press statement
“I have also understood the crucial importance of upholding the rule of law and the independence of State institutions during this period of transition, and above all the importance of safeguarding an independent judiciary, free from interference,” Jones said.
He said this as Maoists launched direct attacks against the supreme court and judges after a recent verdict reinstating eight brigadier generals whose services were terminated by the Maoist-led government.
“We encourage the Government of Nepal to take forward the peace process, including the drafting of a new constitution that secures peace, stability and democracy,” he said. .
“ British Army and the UK continue to benefit from the outstanding contribution still being made by the Brigade of Gurkhas including their service on international peace-keeping operations.
“ I very much hope that the UK will be able to recruit Gurkhas into the British Army into the future,” Jones said.

Rashtriya Janamorcha protests federal structure

Kathmandu, 18 April: Rashtriya Janamoircha is holding a protest demonstration Saturday inthe capital against a federal stat structure.
The communist party said it will submit a memorandum to President Dr Ram Baran Yadav Sunday against the proposed structure.

Indian Maoists kill 18 persons on polling day [Excerpts]

New Delhi, 16 April: Naxalites struck in Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Orissa killing 18 people, including five poll officials and ten security personnel, as moderate to brisk voting was reported across 17 states and two union territories on the first day of Lok Sabha elections, Times of India reports.
Shortly after voting began on Thursday, Naxals blew up a landmine targeting a bus ferrying BSF personnel in Latehar district in Jharkhand, in which five personnel and two civilians were killed.
Naxals also blew up a vehicle carrying poll officials in Chhattisgarh’s Rajnandgaon district killing five and injuring two, police said.
Poilling booths were set on fire and here as exchange of fire between Maoists and CRPF in Dantewada and Narainpur areas in the state. Two CRPF jawans were killed while five were injured in Dantwewada.
Maoists also set fire to at least three pooling booths, electronic voting machines and other materials in Orissa’s Malkangiri on Thursday, disrupting voting.
In Bihar, a homeguard and a police official on election duty were shot dead and another injured by Naxals in Singhpur village in Gaya district, police said. Two police personnel were reported missing.

British minister holds discussions with PM Prachanda

Kathmandu, 18 April: British Under Secretary of State for Defence and Minister for Veterans Kevan Jones held discussions with Prime Minister Prachanda before concluding a five-day visit Saturday.
Jones said United Kingdom was ready to extend help for the integration of the PLA and Nepal Army.

Jhalanath Khanal leaves for China

Kathmandu, 18 April: CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal left for a week-long visit of China Saturday lading a five-member party delegation.
He flew for China via Lhasa.
He will hold discussions with leaders of the Chinese Communist Party.

Hearings to be approved by majority

Kathmandu, 18 April: Parliamentary hearing committee has incorporated a change to approve appoints through a majority vote.
The committee Friday sent a suggestion to the parliament secretariat.
An amendment was made to a prevision in which a government appointment would be approved even with the consent of one person.

President asks party leaders to cooperate

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 April: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav Friday asked leaders of political parties to cooperate to draft a constitution and take the peace process to a conclusion.
The president Friday invited leaders of all 24 parties in parliament to a tea reception to mark New Year 2066.
Prime Minister Prachanda, main opposition Nepali Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala and other party leaders were present.
“Right now reconciliation between political parties in needed; that is the need of the country and people. Political parties should move forward unitedly by maintaining unity and cooperation between political parties to draft a democratic constitution and establish peace.”
The president hosted the reception amid fears the constitution maay not be drafted within the May 1010 deadline.
“The prime minister should be liberal for cooperation. He should have a broad mind. I am ready for cooperation,” Koirala said.
“How can I work alone, Girija babu? You have to help as well,” Prachanda said.

Load-shedding reduced to 12 hours

Kathmandu, 18 April: Load-shedding was reduced by four hours Friday to 12 hours a day by Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).
Water level of rivers has risen after snowmelt and rainfall.

Four senior officials fined

Kathmandu, 18 April: CIAA Friday fined four senior officials for not disclosing assets as required by law.
Health secretary, Dr Sudha Sharma, Engineer at the Eastern Regional Irrigation Directorate Dhruba Kumar Neupane, Planning Officer at Ministry of Local Development Narayan Prasad Koirala and senior forest
Officer Pravat Chaudhari were fined Rs 5,000 each.
They have been asked to furnish details within 30 days.

Violence continues in terai

Kathmandu, 18 April: Ram Kumar Mahoti was shot dead by an unidentified group in Dhanusha Friday as violence continues in the terai.
Krishna Gupta was injured in a bomb blast at a factory in Kapilvasthu Friday.
Three members of a family were killed in Ilam Friday.

Nepali Congress against ordinances

Kathmandu, 18 April: Main opposition Nepali Congress Friday registered notices in parliament Friday rejecting three ordinances promulgated by government.
The party rejected ordinance to amend electoral rolls, another ordinance on disappeared (crime and punishment) and an ordinance to make public service inclusive.
The party charged ordinances were issued bypassing parliament to make the legislature ineffective.


“Britain has fooled the Nepalis. They have made us believe that a hike in our superannuation allowance is as good as an increment.”
Vice-chairman of Gurkhas Ex-Servicemen’s Association Himal Rai, The Himalayan Times, 18 April)

“Constitutionally. I am a powerful executive prime minister; but in practice, I am not.”

PM Prachanda, Annapurna Post, 18 April)

“If agreement is not implemented [by Maoists], political structure csn change.”

(Jhalanath Khanal, Annapurna Post, 18 April)

“I want to take all the parties together for completion of the peace process and important task of drafting the constitution; but other political parties are being difficult.”

(PM Prachanda, The Kathmandu Post, 18 April)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Interrupted session of parliament resumess

Kathmandu, 15 April: Interrupted session of parliament met for the first time after 25 March.
An agreement was reached between Maoists and main Nepali Congress.
The winter session has been extended until 14 May.
The session ended Monday.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Maoist, Nepali Congress meeting

Kathmandu, 15 April: Maoist and main opposition Nepali Congress leaders held discussions Wednesday to find an agreement to run parliament smoothly.
Meetings have been disrupted since 25 March with Congress demanding a statement from Prime Minister Prachanda on nine demands including return of seized assets and curb on activities of YCL point demand
Narayan Kazi Shrestha and Dr Ram Sharan Mahat led the Maoist and Congress delegations.
Parliament is scheduled to meet Wednesday.
Maoists earlier reached agreement with CPN-UML and TMLP to run the house smoothly.

British minister holds discussions with president, prime minister

Kathmandu, 15 April: Visiting British Minister Undersecretary of State for Defence and Veterans Kevan Jones Wednesday held discussions with President Dr Ram Baran Yadav.
He is scheduled to hold discussions with Prime Minister Prachanda later Wednesday.
Jones arrived Tuesday on a five-day visit also to discuss Gurkha affairs.

Three Tanzanians expressed

Kathmandu, 15 April: Three male Tanzanians were arrested in a raid on a house in the capital Tuesday with heroin and illegal foreign currency.
Four Nepali women were among nine arrested in the raid.

Jhalanath Khanal visiting China

Kathmandu, 15 April: CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal is visiting from Saturday, party mouthpiece Budhabar reports.
He is leading a five-member team.
Vice Chairman Ashok Rai, secretary Yubaraj Geywali and central committee members Surendra Pandey and Raghuji Pant are members of the team.
They are visiting China at the invitation of the Chinese Communist Party.

Reliable commission to investigate Narayanhiti royal palace massacre

Kathmandu, 15 April: A ‘reliable commission’ will be formed to investigate the Narayanhiti royal massacre, Kantipur reports.
An agreement was reached Tuesday at a high-level meeting of a body to run government.
“The committee has suggested the government to form a reliable commission after a commitment for a probe by the prime minister, CPN-UML General Secretary Sunil Manandhar told Kantipur after the meeting.

[Note: Crown Prince Dipendra killed all family members of King Birendra in the 1 June 2001 palace massacre.]

For first time US Secretary of State Clinton greets Nepalis on new year 2066

Kathmandu, 14 April: In the first Nepali new year greeting by a US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton hoped for peace, prosperity and tolerance in Nepal..
“To all those around the world who share common Nepali cultural and linguistic traditions,
“I send best wishes for a happy 2066. I hope that in this New Year, Nepal will continue on the path to peace and prosperity.
“As you welcome the New Year, I salute the spirit of tolerance and shared heritage that brings Nepalis together regardless of their differences on this day to celebrate and exchange good wishes.
“All New Year celebrations reflect the hope of new beginnings. As the world faces the greatest economic challenges in generations, we all must stand together to embrace the New Year’s promise of rebirth and renewal.”

Couple injured in Birgunj bomb blast

Kathmandu, 14 April: A couple of terai origin was injured in a bomb blast overnight in Birgunj.
The husband and wife are out of danger.
Jwala Singh group claimed responsibility for the bombing of the couple’s house.
Daily violence continues in the terai.

Maoist-led govt. trying to disrupt army chain of command

Kathmandu, 14 April: The Nepali Army today [Monday] told the supreme Court that a conspiracy was hatched to break the chain of command of the national army by putting a freeze on its recruitment drive, The Himalayan Times reports.
Last month, the apex court had ordered the NA to stop hiring in the near future.
The NA, in turn, stated that the recruitment was carried out in the spirit of the interim constitution, urging the SC not to intervene in the issue.
“The move aims to break the command structure of the NA, “said BA Kumar Sharma, chief, legal department, NA, while submitting a written response to the apex court.
Brigadier General Bijaya Bikram Singh, who represents Army Recruitment Directorate, also filed a separate se of written explanations today.
The NA’s outburst came in the wake of SC show cause notice on a PIL filed by INHURED International, an NGO, which challenged the fresh recruitment process.

Monday, April 13, 2009

New year 2066 being celebrated

Kathmandu, 14 April: New year 2066 is being celebrated with visits to temples.
Former King Gyanendra , in a message, called for national unity, reconciliation and cooperation without disturbing a special cultural tradition.
The former king wished for the right of all Nepalis from the Himalaya, hills and terai to live, survive, independence and human rights.
The former king hoped the country will always remain as tall as Mount Everest.
The president, prime minister and leaders of political parties expressed their best wishes as well.

British minister arrives

Kathmandu, 14 April: British Under Secretary for Defence and
Veterans Kevan Jones arrived Tuesday on a five-day visit.
He will hold discussions with President Dr Ram BaranYadav, PM Prachanda and Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav.
The minister will also discuss Gurkha affairs during his talks with concerned officials.

Parliament meets Wednesday

Kathmandu, 14 April: Parliament meets again Wednesday after adjournment Monday.
Nepali Congress again demanded firm replies from Prime Minister Prachanda on nine demands, including return of seized assets.
Maoists, CPN-UML and TMLP reached an agreement to run cabinet and parliament smoothly.
Parliamentary proceedings have been disturbed since 25 March.
Meanwhile, a winter session of parliament that was scheduled to end Monday has been extended until 14 May.
Because of disturbances, no bill has been passed.
A preliminary draft of a proposed constitution that was to be presented 23 April hasn’t even been drafted.

Mid-Marsyangdi generates 75MW power

Kathmandu, 14 April: As a crippling load-shedding continues, Mid-Marsyangdi has started generating 75 MW electricity curing peak hours.
Water flow of the river has increased after rains, snowfall and glacier melting.

English cricketers allowed to play in Everest region

Kathmandu, 14 April: England cricketers, who are making a bid to write history by playing on the lap of Mt. Everest, reached Khumjung on Monday after they were reportedly denied entry to Sagarmatha National Park, The Kathmandu Post reports.
Park officials stopped them on Sunday, saying they lacked proper documents.
At state is a mountainous project: To play cricket at the highest altitude ever—at 5,165 meters in Gorak Shep—where the milky-white Khumbu Glacier placidly flows by.


“The country is turning into a failed state. Where will you stand if the country doesn’t exist?”

(Girija Prasad Koirala, The Kathmandu Post,14 April)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Nine-point agreement between Maoists, CPN-UML

Kathmandu, 12 April: Maoists and coalition partner CPN-UML Sunday signed a nine-point agreement in an attempt to end a political deadlock.
But is was not certain if the deadlock will be broken.
Both parties expected it will be broken.
PM Prahanda is expected to address parliament Monday.


“We [India’s main opposition BJP] want Gorkhaland.”

(Former BJP leader and Indian Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh and candidate of BJP for parliamentary elections from Darjeeling ,Times of India, 12 April)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Maoists gain one seat in CA which is also parliament

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 12 April: Maoists gained one seat in the constituent assembly (CA), which is also parliament, in Friday’s by-elections in six constituencies.
With final results in late Saturday night, Maoists collected three seats in the assembly, retaining two seats they vacated.
Chandra Bahadur Buda, who defected to Maoist from RPP-Nepal, retained a constituency from Rolpa vacated by Prime Minister Prachanda after being elected from two constituencies in the 10 April 2008 CA elections.
Buda collected 19,933 votes to defeat his nearest UPL-UML rival by more than 13,000 votes.
Maoists launched their people’s war 14 years ago from Rolpa where they were based.
Maoists gained a seat vacated by Sher Bahadur Deuba of Nepali Congress in Kanchanpur and also retained a seat in Kaski vacated by Maoist Law Minister Deb Gurung.
CPN-UML also gained a seat in Dhanusha where Nepali Congress lost a seat vacated by President Dr Ram Baran Yadav after he was appointed president.
Nepali Congress lost two seats but gained one in Morang 5 where Dr Shekhar Koirala, staged a comeback after losing to Bijaya Kumar Gachedhar of MJF in the 2008 elections.
The family of party President Girija Prasad Koirala suffered humiliation when all but one family member were trounced in the 2008 vote.
MJF, the largest party in the terai, retained another seat in Morang 7.
Maoists captured three, main opposition Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and MJF one seat in Friday’s by-elections.
MJF put up candidates only in three terai districts on a One Madesh, One Pradesh plank opposed by the three other parties who registered victories.
The new lawmakers will be sworn in Monday when the CA and parliament are scheduled to meet.
Voting turnout about 50 percent—low by Nepali standard—amid a rebellion in the terai.
Participation in elections in Nepal is normally about 64 percent.

Drafting of the constitution is behind schedule

Kathmandu, 12 April: A six-member joint task force of the Unified CPN (Maoist) and coalition partner CPN-UML has to furnish suggestions Sunday on ways to resolve a political deadlock that is hampering work of government, parliament and could even delay the work of drafting a constitution.
The winter session of parliament ends Monday and not even one bill or ordinance pending in parliament has been passed following disruption of proceedings from 25 March.
Major parties have suggested the winter session should be extended.
A preliminary of the constitution has to be submitted by a constitution drafting committee headed by Madhav Kumar Nepal on 23 April one day before Loktantra day—the fourth anniversary of the fall of the royal regime.
CPN-UML has been boycotting cabinet sessions and obstructing parliamentary meetings demanding action by coalition partner Maoists against Sujit BK-alleged killer of a CPN-UML youth leader in Butwal.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has been obstructing parliamentary sessions since 25 March demanding a statement from the prime minister on five demands, including a return of seized assets.
There is no agreement as yet on the fundamental features of a constitution—with Maoists demanding a presidential communist form of government and Nepali Congress insisting of a parliamentary system of government.
After spending Rs 440 millionon collecting public opinion by visiting districts, Madhav Kumar Nepal said Saturday people now should be consulted on a new structure of government and state .
Response of the people during visits of lawmakers was poor; people didn’t respond as questionnaires that were legalistic and they couldn’t be understood by laymen.

Dr Baburam Bhattarai issues challenge to supreme court

Kathmandu, 12 April: Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai Saturday issued a challenge to the supreme court to six Maoist leaders,including him and Prime Minister Prachanda.
“Put us in jail if you can,” he told a public meeting in Gorkha one day after the supreme court asked six Maoists to furnish written replies within one week against contempt of court charges.
Bhattarai charged the supreme court was running as in the panchayat period.
He repeated an earlier call that judges should be elected.
Maoist leaders have been burning effigies of judges and making personal comments against judged after a verdict asking the Maoist-led government to reinstate eight brigadier generals of the Nepal Army whose tenure was not extended.
The request was made by the army.

Army division chiefs meet Sunday

Kathmandu, 12 April: A two-day meeting of six division chiefs of Nepal Army starts at army headquarters Sunday.
Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal is to launch the meeting.
The meeting has been called after a cooling of relationship between the Maoist-led government and the army.

Chinese at Kimathanka border to curb activities by Dalai Lama suporters

Kathmandu, 12 April: Chinese government has for the first time established a red army camp of nearly 600 soldiers adjoining Nepal’s border at Kimathanka, Surendra Subedi reports from Sankuwasabha.
The army has been Nepali territory as well.
Sankhuwasabha district administration said the main camp is at Dendang in China and a 24-hour vigil is being kept by establishing camps at more than 12 points on the Nepal-China border at Kamu khola, Changa, Arun river and Saadang.
Acting CDO Rajendra Sigdel said,” Information has been received after Dalai Lama supporters in Nepal increased anti-China activities, camps have been established to control such activities.”
Police Chief Poshraj Pokhrel said the red army has been deployed after anti-China activities at some places in Kathmandu.
A dozen Nepali policemen posted at the border are sending reports to the district.
The well-equipped red army is keeping a 24-hour vigil.
Nearly 500 persons of Tibetan origin in Sankhuwasabha are deployed for the protection of Dalai Lama.
Every year about a dozen Tibetan-speaking people from the district are recruited by in the Dalai Lam army.
Sankhuwasabha lawmaker Dambar Bahadur Khadka said the army may have been deployed fearing anti-China could be started on this basis.
Nepalis are strictly watched as they enter Dedang; entry into China is prohibited from 10 on the morning at four in the afternoon.


“There are some anarchist elements in CPN-UML. These elements are creating indiscipline in the party.”

(Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam, Kantipur, 12 April”

‘We’re witnessing here a gaijatra nor seen anywhere else. There’s leg-pulling going on even while continuing in government.”

(Dr Baburam Bhattarai, Annapurna Post, 12 April)

CPN-UML wrests Dhanusha constituency

Kathmandu, 11 April: Raghubir Mahaseth of CPN-UML was elected from a Dhanusha constituency bagging 13,222 votes.
He defeated Shri Krishna Yadav of TMLP who got 12,189 votes in Friday’s by-elections for six parliamentary constituencies.
Maoists won from two constituencies and Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and MJF from one constituency each.
Maoists are leading in vote counting from a district in Rolpa vacated by Prime Minister Prachanda.

Maoists, CPN-UML form task force to suggest break in deadlock

Kathmandu, 11 April: Top Maoist and CPN-UML leaders met and formed a joint six-member study task force within 24 hours to suggest a solution to break a deadlock that has obstructed parliamentary and cabinet meetings.
There are three members each from the two parties.
Among members are Narayan Kazi Shrestha from Unified CPN (Maoist) and Ashok Rai from CPN-UMl.
Parliament was again adjourned Saturday without conducting business.

Maoists retain Kaski constituency

Kathmandu, 11 April: Maoists retained a Kashi constituency in Friday’s parliamentary by-elections by a narrow margin of only 32 votes.
Krishna Gurung collected 12,257 and defeated his nearest Congress Maj Dipak Gurung.
Maoists have won two seats, and Congress and MJF one seat each; elections were held in six constituencies.
Raghubir Mahaseth of CPN-UML maintains a narrow lead over Shri Krishna Yadav of TMLP in Dhanusha where Congress candidate Dr Chandra MohanYadav, son of President Dr Ram Baran Yadav trails.
Vote counting was delayed in Kaski and Ghanusha were votes now have to be counted from one booth only.
Vote counting in Rolpa is now expected to begin only in the evening.

Maximum flexibility to run parliament smoothly: PM Prachanda

Kathmandu, 11 April: Prime Minister Prachanda said Saturday he’ll adopt ‘maximum flexibility’ in trying to run parliament smoothly whose proceedings have been disrupted since 25 March.
Coalition partner of Maoists in government CPN-UML Friday decided to continue obstruction of cabinet and parliament meetings until the alleged Maoist killer of a CPN-UML is booked.
Maoist secretariat meeting was held Saturday to discuss the obstruction and other issues.
The prime minister plans to hold meetings with leaders of other political parties to break the impasse.
Top Maoist and CPN-UML leaders immediately started discussions after the secretariat meeting and two ours before a scheduled meeting of parliament.

British Twenty20 team flies for Mount Everest for a record breaking cricket match

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 11 April: A 50-member British cricket team Saturday morning flew for Lukla at the foot of the 8848 meters high Mount Everest, the world’s tallest team, to play a record breaking cricket match at the highest altitude.
The Twenty20 match will be staged at Gorakshep situated at 5,165 meters; players could develop life-threatening altitude playing cricket in the rarified air.
The group has 30 players and 20 support staff.
Two teams have been named after Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa who first scaled Mount Everest 56 years ago.
Cricketers from United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand will play the match.
“The dimensions of the ground are of international standards asset by International Cricket Council (ICC),” said Richard Kiretly before proceeding for the mountain.
Kiretly planned the competition.
Proceeds from the match estimated at 200,000 pounds sterling-- will be donated to The Himalayan Trust of UK which runs schools and hospitals in the Everest region.
The Himalayan Trust was founded by Sir Edmund Hillary to help sherpas in the region.
Part of the proceeds will also be donated to The Lord’s Taverners which supports young disabled to enjoy sport.
Every year record breaking exploits are being recorded on Everest and the region.
Pemba Dorji Sherpa is attempting to stay for 24 hours atop Everest without bottled oxygen.
He also holds the record for the fastest ascent on the mountain in eight hours and 10 minutes and two ascents of the peak in five days.
Apa Sherpa is attempting to break a personal record of 18 ascents by climbing Everest this spring.

Chief justice retires 4 May

Kathmandu, 11 May: Chief Justice Kedar Prasad Giri retired 4 May after reaching superannuation age, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
Judicial council Friday has notified the constitutional council.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Dr Shekhar Koirala elected from Morang 7

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 11 April: Dr Shekhar Koirala of Nepali Congress wrested the Morang 7 constituency from MJF in Friday’s by-election.
Koirala, nephew of Girija Prasad Koirala, defeated his nearest MJF rival Chum Narayan Tabedar by 600 plus votes.
Koirala family members, including Dr Koirala, were routed in constituent assembly elections 10 April 2008.
KoOirala collected 12,071 votes.
Foreign Minister land MJF Chairman Upendra Yadav had vacated the seat after being elected from two constituencies.
Krishna Gurung of Unified CPN-Maoist is leading his nearest Congress rival Dipak Gurung by nearly 1,000 votes a Kaski vacated by Maoist Law Minister Deb Gurung.
Maoists, Congress and MJF have been declared from constituencies in Kanchanpur, Dhanusha and Morang 5.
Elections were held in six constituencies.
CPN-UML candidate Raghubir Mahaseth is leading in vote counting in Dhanusha and is certain to wrest the constituency from the district vacated by President Dr Ram Baran Yadav after his appointment.
Congress has lost one constituency but has gained another.
Vote counting in Rolpa is expected to begin only after one in the afternoon.
MJF, the largest party in the terai, has fared badly in the vote.
It has lost one constituency but fared badly in other terai districts.

Maoists, MJF take early lead in parliamentary by-election

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 11 Maoist: Maoist and MJF candidates took early lead in Friday’s parliamentary elections as their candidates were elected from Kanchanpur and Morang.
Harish Thakulla was elected from a constituency defeating his nearest Nepali Congress rival Yagya Raj Joshi; She Bahadur Deuba vacated the seat after being elected from two constituencies in the 10 April 2008 constituent assembly elections.
MJF retained a Morang constituency where Jaya Ram Yadav was elected from Morang-5 defeating his nearest Maoist rival Shib Kumar Mandal
The seat was vacated by Bijaya Kumar Gachedhar.
Elections were held Friday in six parliamentary constituencies through electronic voting.
Vote counting continues in three other constituencies; counting of votes in
Rolpa where Prime Minister Prachanda vacated a seat begins only later Saturday afternoon.
Elections for six constituencies in five terai and hill districts were held Friday.

Rishi Dhamala freed

Kathmandu, 11 April: Chairman of Reporters Club Rishi Dhamala Saturday said his arrest was part of a ‘state attack against an independent’ press without identifying the organ.
“My arrest in an organized plot against an independent press,” Dhamala said claiming he was innocent,
Patan appellate court Friday ordered Dhamala’s; the decision hasn’t been executed yet..
Dhamala was arrested and charged more than two months ago for extortion and attempted murder and charged forlinks with Ranabir Sena, a group calling for a Hindu state.
But the court upheld the arrest of three other journalists Ram Suvak Mahoti, Manoj Kumar Mahotoi and Birendra Kumar Mehata charged for decision

CPN-UML charges Maoists for protecting Sujit

Kathmandu, 11 April: The first standing committee of CPN-UML of CPN-UML Friday charged Maoists for protesting Sujit BK who they charged for killing their party youth activist in Butwal.
CPN-UML has been boycotting cabinet and obstructing sessions of parliament demanding arrest and prosecution of BK.
CPN-UML took the decision even as parliament is scheduled to meet Saturday.
CA Chairman Subash Nemwang held discussions with whips of major parties in an attempt to discuss smooth running of parliamentary proceedings stalled from 29 March.
National Human Rights Commission has denied a Maoist claim BK fled from the commission office where he was being delivered by the party.
Major political parties have agreed to amend parliamentary procedure rules to prolong the winter session that ends 13 April, Annapurna Post reports.
The rule says winter sessions at the end of Chitra. Nnnn

Jwala Singh activist killed in police action

Kathmandu, 11 April: Jwala Singh group activist Parshuram Kori was shot and killed in a police action in Banke Friday night.
An exchange of gunfire lasted for 30 minutes at Shibapur village of Bethani.
A gun, pistol, socket bombs and ammunition were recovered.
Kashim Bahadur Thinka, 14, was shot dead Friday night in Bara by an unknown group in continuing violence in teari.

PM visiting China in the first week of May

Kathmandu, 11 April: Prime Minister Prachanda is visiting China for a week in the first week of May, Kantipur reports.
Dates were proposed to visiting Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav in Beijing.
“A meeting with the president and prime minister has been scheduled on 6,7 May,” the newspaper said quoting a foreign ministry official.


“Government hasn’t been able to work properly because of its coalition character.”

(PM Prachanda, Kantipur, 11 April)

Two injured in by-election firing

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 10 April: Two persons were injured in firing in Dhanusha during parliamentary by-elections Friday for a seat vacated by President Dr Ram Baran Yadav, a journalist from the scene said.
The president’s son is contesting the seat on a Nepali Congress ticket.
The journalist said CPN-UML activists were behind the shooting.
By-elections are being held for six parliamentary constituencies.
Five lawmakers, including Prime Minister Prachanda and Sher Bahadur Deuba, vacated one of two seats from where they were elected in the 10 April 2008 constituent assembly elections,
The nine –hour voting started at eight in the morning.

President, prime minister hold discussions

Kathmandu, 10 April: President Dr Ram Baran Yadav and
Prime Minister Prachanda held an hour-long discussion, including the disruption of cabinet and parliamentary meetings.
The meeting was the first after the premier’s return from Norway and Finland.

PM asked to furnish reply in one week

Kathmandu, 10 April: A one-man bench of the supreme court Friday asked Prime Minister Prachanda to furnish a written reply within seven days on a contempt of court charge.
Five other Maoists, including Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai,have also been asked to respond to the same charge.
Maoists in public statements hurled personal abuses against the supreme court and judges who asked the Maoist-led government to reinstate eight brigadier generals whose tenure was not extended on recommendation of Nepal Army.