Nepal Today

Friday, March 29, 2013

PRESIDENT HOLDING TALKS WTHBIR FOUR LEADERS Kathmandu, 30 March: President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav is holding wilks with the Big For Saturday. Discussions are being held as uncertainty grows on a second constitutional assembly election in mid-June. The alternative date vote is in November after Dashain.Tihar. nnnn CHIEF ELECTON COMMISSIONER, PRESIDENT TALKS Kathmandu, 30 March: Chief Election Commissioner Neelkantha Uprety held discussions with President Dr.. Ram Baran Yadav as major parties demand election for firm elections date for the second constituent assembly and 33 parties, including CPN Maoist, obstruct work to update a voters’ list. The government of senior retired government officials headed by Chief Justice Khil Regmi Regmi hasn’t announced firm date even 19 days after installation with support of four parties. Government Friday formed a three-member ministerial team to hold talks with parties opposing government and elections to hold a vote inviting parties on the street to join talks. Opponents are obstructing work of election officials deputed to districts to update a voters’ list in which 11.1 million persons votes have been registered. Four main parties behind government have also asked parties to sit down for talks to discuss differences. Thirty-three parties have demanded ouster of the Regmi government and its replacement by a national consensus government chosen by a roundtable conference. In the Valley, work of on updating a voters; has been disrupted in Lalitpur and Bhaktapur. Second round of talks of election commission officials with leaders of the Big Four couldn’t be held Friday with a talks boycott; a team led by top leader Krishna Bahadur Mahara participated in talks one day earlier. nnnn NEPAL PLAYS MAYAYSIA IN ACC TWENTY20 Kathmandu, 30 March: Nepal plays Malaysia Saturday in the ACC Twenty20 Cup after winning a match against Maldives and losing to Hong Kong. Nepal must win to qualify for the semi-final for which Hong Kong has already qualified. nnnn 32 SELECTED FOR CRICKET TRAINING CAMP Kathmandu, 30 March Thirty-two players have been selected by Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) Friday for the closed training camp for the upcoming ACC U-19 Elite Cup being held 1 May 1 in Malaysia. Amit Dahal, Kalicharan Yadav, Mayanand Chaudhary and Suman Shrestha of Biratnagar and Avinash Karn, Ram Naresh Giri, Suraj Kumar Kurmi, Amit Shrestha and Irshad Ahmed of Birgunj . Prakash Bista (A), Prakash Bista (B), Sarad Khadka, Bibas Thapa and Pawan Shrestha, Sabin Shakya, Nirmal Thapa, Prakash KC, Bibek Chaudhary and Sushant Bhari are also in the team.. Amar Singh Rautela and Inamuddin Halwai of Nepalgunj; Bhuban Karki, Prem Tamang, Arjun Chapagain and Yagyaman Kumal of Baitadi; Sameer Nepal, Avishek Jha, Rahul Pratap Singh and Hari Shankar Shah of Janakpur; and Nischal Pandey, Anil Gurung and Dhurba Karki of Region No 8 have been chosen for the closed camp eing opened in Pokhara from 2 April. , . Nnnn CAPITAL’S MORNING TEMPERATURE 13 DEGREES CELSIUS Kathmandu, 30 March: Capital’s Saturday morning temperature at seven was13 degrees Celsius. Mercury is expected to rise to 31 degrees Celsius in the afternoon. nnnn, EC EFFORTS REMOVING LEGAL HURDLES FOR VOTE Kathmandu, 30 March: In a bid to clear the legal hurdles and make necessary preparations for the Constituent Assembly (CA) polls, the Election Commission (EC) has begun discussions with the major political parties, Gani Ansari writes in Republica.. Top EC officials including Chief Election Commissioner Neel Kantha Uprety and Commissioners Dolakh Bahadur Gurung, Ayodhi Prasad Yadav, Rambhakta PB Thakur and Ila Sharma on Thursday asked members of the taskforce which was entrusted with the responsibility for drafting an ordinance on removing constitutional difficulties, about the intention and spirit behind the 25-point ordinance. “We held discussions with the core team as it is necessary to amend all the election-related acts,” said Uprety. According to EC officials, the 25-point ordinance on removing constitutional difficulties has not yet cleared all the legal hurdles. “The 25-point ordinance has only amended the Interim Constitution but not the election-related acts. And these election-related laws must be amended in order to pave the way for elections,” an EC official told Republica on condition of anonymity. The constitutional body has stated that the Election of Members of Constituent Assembly Act, 2064 and the Electoral Rolls Act, 2064, among other election related acts, need to be amended. EC officials have said that point number 12 of the 25-point ordinance on removing constitutional difficulties is ambiguous as it states that the electoral rolls will be updated as per the voter list prepared for the erstwhile CA polls and Clause 11 of the Electoral Rolls Act, 2064, which does not compulsorily require citizenship certificates. “The old electoral rolls are no longer relevant as the EC has been preparing a voter list with photos and biometrics, and Clause 11 of the Electoral Rolls Act, 2064 is also defunct. So, we need clarity on these issues,” added the EC officials. CPN-UML leader and advocate Agni Kharel, who was present at the meeting, said that they would hold further discussions on Friday. “We decided to hold further discussions on a draft amendment of the necessary election-related acts tomorrow (Friday),” Kharel told media persons after the meeting. Asked if CA polls could be conducted by June, NC leader Minendra Rijal, who was present at the meeting, said, “We all wish to hold the polls by June 21 but the practical difficulties are not hidden from anyone.” At a time when some fringe political parties are obstructing the ongoing voter registration, Secretary at the Home Ministry Navin Ghimire, who held a meeting with the EC commissioners, said his ministry has been providing necessary security to EC officials deployed for the purpose. He also informed that the Home Ministry will soon deploy mobile teams to distribute citizenship certificates, which are essential for the voter registration. Nnnn NEPAL ELECTION IN PERSPECTIVE Kathamandu, 30 March: Top leaders from the three major political parties and the United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) on Friday decided to hold talks with disgruntled political parties with a view to persuading them to participate in the coming Constituent Assembly (CA) elections and not disrupt the ongoing voter registration drive by the Election Commission, Republica reports.. A meeting of the High Level Political Committee, which provides necessary support to the technocratic government to create an environment for elections, decided to talk to the agitating political parties. Top leaders from the three major political parties -- UCPN (Maoist), Nepali Congress (NC), CPN-UML-- and UDMF, accompanied by other party leaders, represent their parties on the committee. The meeting was held at the office of the Special Committee for Integration of Former Maoist combatants, at New Baneshwar. "Top leaders from the four major parties will talk to leaders from the agitating parties," UCPN (Maoist) Vice-chairman Narayankaji Shrestha told Republica. "Talks with them will be held right from tomorrow as per the convenience of the leaders concerned." A dozen organizations, including the Mohan Baidya-led CPN-Maoist, Upendra Yadav´s Madhesi People´s Rights Forum and Ashok Rai´s Federal Socialist Party, have protested the four-party deal, forged without their consent, on forming the election government under the leadership of the chief justice and holding elections in June. The Baidya Maoists have seized laptops, web cameras and other logistics from election officials deployed for voter registeration in various districts, in the last couple of days. According to Shrestha, the parties are for holding talks with all the political parties and various other groups which are dissatisfied with the recent political decisions and have been protesting against the latest developments. The leaders decided to suggest to the government to initiate the process of forming a Truth and Reconciliation Commission without delay, as the relevent ordinance has already been endorsed to pave the way for its formation. The leaders also decided to talk to the government and the election commission officials and suggest to them to fix an election date without further delay. "An understanding has already been reached at the political level to conduct polls by June 21. Now it´s up to the government to fix a specific date," said Shrestha. "We will ask the government as well as the election commission about the things that the political parties need to be doing to support them in holding polls." A cabinet meeting earlier on Friday formed a talks team headed by Home and Foreign Minister Madhav Ghimire and with a mandate to talk to the dissident political parties, the election commission, civil society and other concerned groups with an objective of creating an environment conducive for elections. Minister for Health and Local Development Bidyadhar Mallik and Minister for Information and Communication Madhav Paudel are others on the three-member government team tasked with the responsibility of holding talks and laying the ground for polls. "This committee will mainly play a coordinating and bridging role between the government and other stakeholders through dialogue," Paudel told Republica. The government also decided to appeal to various agitating groups, including civil servants´ organizations, to support the government in holding polls within the given timeframe. "We will first listen to their concerns and grievances. The government will first address their valid concerns and make an appeal to them to play a positive role in holding elections," said Paudel. nnnn


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