Nepal Today

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

India’s sword politics

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: India’s decision whether to honour Nepali army chiefs with the rank of honourary general of the Indian army reflects the state of relations between Nepal and India.
The two states have traditionally conferred the army chiefs of both countries honorary generals of their armies.
The rank of honourary general conferred on Army Chief Gen. Chatraman Singh Gurung during his just concluded India visit marked the restoration of normal ties between the two countries snapped during the royal regime five years ago.
The honour also reflects the good state relations between the two South Asian neighbours.
India honour Gen Gurung’s predecessor Gen. Rukmangud Katawal who was chief during the royal regime.
India didn’t confer that honour on Army Chief Gen. Sachit Shumshere Rana when Indo-Nepal relations were strained after Nepal acquired weapons from China.
Gen Dharmapal Bir Singh Thapa and Gen Pyar Jung Thapa, successors of Gen. Rana, were similarly honoured by India.

Leaders of three parties at main constitution committee meet

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: Chairman Prachanda, UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal and Congress parliamentary party leader Ram Chandra Paudel Wednesday held discussions with Nilambar Acharya, chairman of the main constitution drafting committee .
Chairman Subash Nemwang was present as well.
Acharya sought agreement on subjects over which differences persist between major parties for inclusion in the constitution to be promulgated by 28 May 2010.
The leaders will continue discussions Thursday to find an agreement.
If differences still persist, a vote will be taken.
The main committee is preparing a draft constitution for discussion.
Meanwhile, the constituent assembly is meeting later Wednesday to change the work schedule of subject committees for the eights time.
Three of 11 subject committees didn’t submit their suggestions for articles to be incorporated in the constitution by the 15Deceember deadline.

PM Nepal leaves for China 26 December

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: Hydro power, tourism and infrastructure development will be the subjects for discussion during a week-long visit of Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal to China.
Free access for 279 Nepali products to China will also be discussed.
Nepal leaves for China Sunday.
The premier held discussions with senior cabinet colleagues Tuesday on his first official visit of Nepal’s northern neighbour.
Nepal will lead a 29-member delegation of 14 officials and 15 businessmen.

Maoist to end obstruction of parliament

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: Maoist parliamentary party Wednesday decided not to obstruct parliamentary proceedings from Wednesday.
Top leader Narayan Kazi Shrestha said the party will adopt other means without specifying the methods.
Maoists have been obstructing proceedings for six months after being ousted from government.
They didn’t disrupt proceedings for three days to approve the annual budget.

Secret PM Nepal, Prachanda meet; other details

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: Premier Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and Chairman Prachanda met secretly at a private home in Dhumbari immediately after the government chief held discussions with President Dr Ram Baran Yadav and Nepali Congress president Girija Prasad Koirala Wednesday, Kantipur reports.
The parley, probably at the residence of General Secretary Ishwor Pokhrel, took place immediately after the Maoist chief announced in public the main opposition won’t talk with the UML and Congress to press its demands but will talk only with its ‘lords’ or New Delhi.
“The Maoist declaration of autonomous federal republics and the statements of their leaders indicate they are interested more in creating problems ten in resolving issues,” Raghuji Pant Special Political Advisor of the prime minister quoting the president Rajdhani.
Pant said this after the prime minister briefed the president of the current situation.
They discussed an end to the impasse without coming to an agreement.
“We don’t want to comment on the internal issues of another country,” a Indian foreign ministry official told The Kathmandu Post in the Indian capital.
“They (Maoists) blame India for interfering and then say they want to hold talks with India,” former Foreign Minister Yashwant Sinha told the newspaper.
Maoists have announced a month-long public awareness and exposure campaign from Friday—the fourth phase of their anti-government and anti-president campaign.
They threatened an indefinite strike in demands aren’t met by 24 January.
Nepal is heading towards a crisis with the constitution unlikely to be promulgated by the 28 May 2010 deadline.
The tenure of the constituent assembly with the mandate to draft a constitution also ends.
Maoists themselves are predicting there’s a conspiracy to impose presidential rule.

Govt. attention drawn to UN intervention

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: Government’s attention has been drawn to the OHCHR intervention in the daily and regular work of police, Rajdhani reports.
IGP Ramesh Chand Thakuri has told government he received repeated instructions over telephone–almost orders-- from OHCHR representative Richard Bennet on the second day of Maoist protest.
He inquired about police deployment and instructions to change deployment.
Thakuri drew the attention at an informal meeting where the chief, home defence secretaries were present.
The secretaries decided to draw the attention of the council of ministers to the unwanted interference.


$6m food assistance for Nepal

Kathmandu, 23 Dec.: UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has provided $6 million to WFP—one of the largest ever grant to the food agency—to provide 4,300 tons of food assistance for 600,000 Nepalis this year, an official announcement said.
“The award is a clear acknowledgement by the UN and the international donor community of both the seriousness of the rapidly deteriorating food security situation in Nepal and its commitment to provide relief to families threatened by hunger,” said UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator to Nepal Robert Piper.
Nepal is facing a food crisis after a failed monsoon amid rising food prices.


“He [Prachanda] called New Delhi lords; India was also the base of their battle.”

(Surya Bahadur Thapa, Kantipur, 23 Jan.)

“Dahalji can talk to anyone in the world. He has our blessings.”

(TMLP leader Hridesh Tripathi, Kantipur, 23 Jan.)


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