Nepal Today

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

NC central committee meets

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Nepali Congress central committee is meeting later Wednesday to discuss preparations for November party general congress and an amendment in the party statute to be passed by the congress.
A statute amendment committee has proposed 66 central leaders should be elected to limit extensive powers of the president opposed by party chief ailing octogenarian Girija Prasad Koirala.
Koirala is being challenged stiff opposition in the party central committee coming
Younger generation leaders are pushing collective leadership in the party dominated by Koirala.
The central committee rejected Koirala’s push to cancel the congress and has summoned him to explain his successful request to Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal to promote daughter and Foreign Minister Sujata in government.
She was also appointed deputy prime minister..
An unofficial decision by Koirala critics have either to recall the Congress team in government or issue a warning to the president not to take personal decisions by bypassing parliament.
The issue could come up for discussions Wednesday.
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Four buried alive in Bhaktapur

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Four persons were buried alive while collecting sand in Bhaktapur where three others were also injured.
They were mining sand in Duwakot.
Three labourers are missing.
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Prachanda, US diplomat hold talks

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Chairman Prachanda and the chief of the US embassy held discussions at the Maoist chief’s residence Wednesday amid Maoist threat to launch a popular movement from Sunday.
They discussed the political situation after Maoists announced details of their protests from 1 November.
The embassy is without an ambassador since the recall of Nancy J. Powell after Barack Obama was elected president.
Her replacement hasn’t been announced by the White House as yet.
Washington still puts Maoists on its terrorist list even as USA has established direct contacts with the biggest communist party in Nepal; UCPN (Maoist) is also Nepal’s largest political party.
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SAFTA meet starts in capital today


Kathmandu, 28 Oct: The fourth South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) ministerial-meet starts in the capital later Wednesday.
Commerce ministers of seven SAARC countries are leading their delegations while Pakistan is represented by a joint secretary.
Not much headway has been registered in declaring the region dominated by India as a free trade zone.
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China, Nepal officials meet in Mustang

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Local officials of Mustang and across the border in Tibet are meeting in Jomson Wednesday to discuss border and other issues as Beijing asks Nepal to deploy Armed Police Force along the entire Nepal-Tibet border amid Chinese fears of mounting across-activities activities by Tibetan exiles against China.
The Nepali delegation is led by Mustang chief district officer (CDO) Umesh Kumar Dhakal; the Tibetan delegation arrived in Mustang for the talks.
Nepal is asking China to allow locals free movement 30 km into Tibet; an agreement was reached three years ago.
Locals are pressing for supply of essential goods from Tibet and promotion of border trade.
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Maoist announced details of protests; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Maoists announced a blockade of the Valley, including Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) on 10 November—a part of their protests from Sunday if government doesn’t meet their demands to correct what they call an unconstitutional act of the president to retain sacked Army Chief Gen Rukmangud Katawal.
Maoist Vice-Chairman and Chief of the protest committee Dr Baburam Bhattarai released details of the protests Tuesday.
Government is unlikely to meet Maoist demands for a package solution, including the formation of a Maoist-led national government, by Sunday.
Maoists will mobilize thousands of people and immobilize Singha Durbar, the central secretariat for two days on 12 and 13 November.
Protests will begin Sunday with a nation-wide torch rally.
Maoists will declare autonomous regions 9 November even as major parties aren’t agreed on a new state structure in the new constitution.
Maoists will hold corner meetings and pocket VDCs and municipalities Monday 2 November.
They picket 75 district headquarters for two days 4 and 5 November.
‘We’ve run out of patience. The way talks are progressing, there’s no hope for consensus. But we are still giving time until 1 November,” Dr Bhattarai said.
Maoists are becoming aggressive ahead of the protests.
Former prime minister and Congress leader Sher Bahadur Deuba escaped unhurt when Maoist YCL Tuesday smashed his car in Chitwan Tuesday.
Minister Bal Krishna Khand also escaped unhurt.
Congress lawmaker Gagan Thapa fled the scene of the clash and sought shelter in a nearby house.
Seven persons were injured, including Congress youth leader Thakur Raj Bista in an exchange of brickbats between Maoist and Congress activists..
Congress central committee condemned the attack on Deuba.
Deuba said in Bharatpur Tuesday after the attack,” Maoists are obstructing development by disturbing parliament. They first destroyed physical infrastructure. They’re now obstructing development by disrupting parliamentary proceedings.
Maoists, he charged, are threatening other parties to impose themselves on the nation.
Maoists Tuesday again obstructed proceedings when parliament met after a long dasain and tihar recess.
Maoists released details protests as only seven months remain to promulgate a constitution by the 28 May 2010 deadline.
The constituent assembly is without work after five subject committees have failed to submit their suggestions on a new basis law to the main drafting committee headed by Nilambar Acharya.
Parties differ on fundamentals, including parliamentary system as Maoists push a communist state.
Meanwhile, Chairman Prachanda reportedly told CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal Tuesday the country is heading towards presidential rule and the president’s unconstitutional should be addressed in some form.
“The country is slowly heading towards presidential rule. The president’s action should be addressed in some form.” CPN-UML leader Yubaraj Geywali quoted Prachanda as saying.
Ruling parties oppose Maoist demand saying the president can do no wrong.
President Dr Ram Baran Yadav retained Army Chief Gen Katawal at the request of 18 parties against the spirit of the third popular movement which created a powerful executive prime minister.
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Nepal Army invites Indian army chief

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Reflecting restoration of relations between Indian and Nepal Army (NA), Army Chief Gen Chandraman Singh Gurung has invited his Indian counterpart Gen Deepak Kapoor to visit Nepal at a convenient time.
The invitation reflects the normalization of relations between the armies of the two South Asian states snapped during the royal regime when arms supplies to Nepal were suspended.
India, the largest arms supplier of NA, has now agreed to restore supplies to the state army as Nepal Army faces ammunition crunch with the delayed peace process.
The cabinet Friday cleared the invitation.
President Dr Ram Baran Yadav is scheduled to appoint the Indian top general honourary general of Nepal Army.
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PM Nepal opposes defence minister’s Bhandari’s demand for review of CPA

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal Tuesday opposed the call by Defence Minister Bidya Bhandari for a review of the of the comprehensive pace agreement (CPA) between seven political parties and Maoists brokered by New Delhi.
Bhandari said the delayed implementation of the CPA is an obstruction
for the running of Nepal Army; she said the CPA envisaged the full implementation in six months abut hasn’t been completed even in three years.
“The views [Bhandari’s] are personal,” PM Nepal told the special army integration committee where Maoists objected to Bhandari’s call.
CPN-UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal also opposed the review of the CPA an urged its speedy implementation.
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British Gurkhas to again drag British govt. to court

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Veteran Gurkha soldiers are launching another court battle against the British government over pension rights on Tuesday, AFP reports from London.
The British Gurkha Welfare Society (BGWS) is going to London’s high court because it says around 24,000 veterans and dependents who served in the British army before 1997 receive only a third of the normal payments.
In May, Gurkha veterans with minimum four years’ service won the right to settle in Britain.
“It is an insult that the Gurkhas are yet again forced to take the British government to court,” said Chhatra Rai, general secretary of BGWS.
Ninety-four British lawmakers have so far signed a house of commons motion calling for improved pension rights for Gurkha veterans.
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Nepal to host another international organization

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: SAARC-level secretariat to stop illegal trade in wildlife and body parts will be established in Kathmandu, Nagarik reports.
Nepal, Bhutan, India and Bangladesh agreed Tuesday to establish the secretariat in the Nepalese capital.
Nepal Tuesday proposed at an international meet on tigers a secretariat on SAARC wildlife trade control secretariat should be established in Kathmandu.
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Maoists recall member from technical committee

Kathmandu, 28 Oct: Maoists are seeking an amendment in a suggestion of the technical committee of the special army integration and rehabilitation committee of which Maoists are members, Kantipur reports.
The special committee met Tuesday under the chairmanship of Madhav Kumar Nepal.
The technical committee 15 September submitted a suggestion to the special committee on a chain of command for combatants and work procedures.
Maoists are seeking an amendment saying combatants haven’t been put in the same status as personnel of Nepal Army.
Maoists are recalling Indrajit Rai from the technical committee.
Sources said Rai is being recalled Wednesday as the technical committee forwarded a suggestion to the special committee against the interest of Maoists.
YCL in-charge and politburo member Krishna Bahadur KC and Maoist PLA Deputy Commander and politburo member Chandra Prakash Khanal are being sent to the technical committee.
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MEDIA GOOGLE

“I am ready to sacrifice my life, but will never agree on changing the present government under the leadership of the Unified CPN-Maoist.”

(DPM Bijaya Kumar Gachedhar, The Himalayan Times, 28 Oct.)

“Recently, the foreign secretary of India had called on me. I had told her ‘Look, I am born in Tedi, India, which is located just 30 kilometers away from Biratnagar. I have notified that there are some obnoxious elements who want to destroy Nepal’s social harmony in the name of colour and language.”

(Part of Girija Koirala’s circular to foreigners and Prachanda, Janaastha, 28 Oct.)
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