Nepal Today

Friday, March 22, 2013

DR. BHAGAWAN KOIRALA RETURNS TO TUTH SUNDAY Kathmandu, 23 March: Dr. Bhagawan Koorala, who resigned as Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital chief earlier this month, returns to work Sunday. Government has met demands and TU decision is also positive,” Chief Administrator said. Nnnn NC CENTRAL COMMITTEE TO DISCUSS ELECTION PREPARATION Kathmandu, 23 March: NC central committee has been convened from Thursday 28 March to discuss preparation for second constituent assembly elections, Spokesman Dilendra Badu said in Kantipur. Election management and pogramme will be discussed. RPP-Nepal I also holding regional meetings to participate in the vote. nnnn : ELDERLY BRITISH WOMAN EVACUTED FROM GORKHA FOR TREATMENT IN CAPTIAL Kathmandu, 23 March: British tourist Susan Jacqueline, 65, was evacuated to the capital Friday for futher treatment from Gorkha after a fall while going view Gorkha Durbar. e. She has been bruised all over her body and needed 13 stitches on her head. She was rescued from Haramtari and first admitted to Gorkha Hospital f treatment. OPINION HOLDING THEIR FEET TO THE FIRE Kathmandu, 23 March: Considering the swiftness and sanguinity of the international community’s response, Nepalis were seemingly senseless to have spent all those exquisite weeks on constitutionalism. Chief Justice Khil Raj Regmi’s installation as head of the interim election government, according to these foreign stakeholders, is a welcome development toward consolidating democracyM Maila Baje writes in Nepali Netbook.. The street protesters, backroom complainers and congenital quibblers may have a hard time digesting this subversion of the democratic process. But they should recognize that, at least in this case, separation of powers and judicial independence – like beauty – are in the eyes of the beholder. And, for those with the locus standi to confer legitimacy, every thing is hunky-dory. A leading poll shows the electoral field wide open, with the people willing to hear all ideas. But the prospects of elections do not seem that bright. Even if they were to be held soon enough, prolonged squabbling over the outcome is likelier than ever, considering the perceived shift in the popular mood and the ostensible addiction of the current satrapy to monopolizing matters. Then, of course, there’s that pesky little issue: what do we do if the Regmi government, too, were to prove just another futile experiment? Maila Baje feels Nepalis could do much more than just sit back and seethe. To make some good out of this bewildering twist, we could strive harder to make the international stakeholders own more conscientiously the entire post-April 2006 process. Let’s not feel bad in considering ourselves in some kind of international trusteeship. (Which, so to speak, is far better than the ‘Bhutanization’ we’ve been denouncing and dreading for so long.) The international principals would now have to substantiate that what they have legitimized is actually not so ludicrous. Sure, the Americans and Europeans won’t see eye to eye on everything, despite their perceived proximity on the values of democracy. Nor will the Chinese and Indians ever be able to come close enough to really rooting out the rest. The Russians, Japanese and Pakistanis are other key imponderables we must contend with. However, the international and regional powers that so haughtily claim a stake in this nebulous new Nepal can be expected to sufficiently negotiate their contradictions to build a basic state of equilibrium. Nepalis have seen enough political systems to recognize that the sturdiness of the basic law alone does not ensure regime durability. What does count for us is basic life and liberty in pursuit of a decent existence. The principal panic that has resurfaced is of one of sweeping demographic transformation through the indiscriminate distribution of citizenship certificates by the new government. But that certainly is not the only thing pitting the regional behemoths and their clients against each other. If our water resources are a problem for our neighbors, Nepalis could certainly forgo our long-held dreams of building dams here. In terms of crude water flow, topography long favored the Indians; technology today would allow the Chinese deploy water as a strategic tool. We wouldn’t mind helping out the Americans in such areas as extraordinary rendition, missile defense or what have you. Keep the Free Tibet issue as alive as you will; just don’t kill us. More tangibly, international stakeholders could apportion a percentage of their national budgets in unconditional cash transfers to every Nepali for their fortitude and forbearance. (Indeed, the West could pay us to let the annual March 10 Tibetan protests go ahead unhindered, while the North could then recompense us to stop them. May the highest bidder then triumph.) With a guaranteed monthly check actively adjusted for inflation and more, we might even learn to enjoy these foreign power plays. Nnnn LAVISH PUTIN WELCOME FOR XI Kathmandu, 23 March: : In grandiose fashion, Russia’s Vladimir Putin greeted China’s new president, who has chosen Moscow as his first foreign destination since formally taking the helm last week, AP reports from Moscow.. The scale of today’s reception underlined close ties between the two Cold War-era rivals that are anchored in energy interests and a shared aspiration to curtail US influence around the world. Kremlin guards snapped at attention as Xi Jinping and his long retinue walked into the gilded, chandeliered Grand Kremlin palace. The two leaders greeted members of official delegations in the ornate St George Hall before sitting down for talks. At the start of the negotiations, Putin described the ties between the two countries as an “extremely important factor of global politics.” Xi said in turn that the relations between the two countries are at the best ever. Putin told the ITAR-Tass news agency in an interview published today that Xi’s choice of Moscow for his first trip abroad underscored the “special nature of strategic partnership” between the two former Cold War rivals. Xi became Communist Party chief in November and was formally named president last week. “We are working together, helping to shape a new, more just world order, ensure peace and security, defend basic principles of international law,” Putin said. He added that Russia and China have set an example of a “balanced and pragmatic approach” to international crises — an apparent reference to their lockstep opposition to UN sanctions against Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime. Xi’s choice of Russia followed a tradition of leaders of the two countries paying inaugural visits to each other after taking power to underline their ties. The negotiations are set to focus on oil and gas as China seeks to secure new energy resources to fuel its growing economy. China has looked to secure energy supplies from Russia, the world’s biggest energy producer, as part of a strategy to reduce its dependence on sea routes. Russia, in turn, is interested in securing a share of China’s giant energy market, but talks on a major new pipeline to China have dragged on for years amid fierce price disputes. Bilateral trade has been steadily growing, reaching $88 billion last year, still a fraction of China’s trade with the United States and the European Union. Trade in arms has slackened in recent years as China, which was the number 1 importer of Russian weapons in the 1990s, has built up its own industry largely through cloning. nnnn


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