Nepal Today

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

CPN-UML supports main opposition push against Maoists (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: CPN-UML, the second party in a six-party Maoist-led coalition, Wednesday supported nine demands of the main opposition Nepali Congress which is developing a ‘democratic front’ to topple the four-month government.
But both Nepali Congress and CPN-UML leaders attempted to minimize the importance of the agreement by saying they weren’t trying to topple the government led by Prime Minister Prachanda.
CON-UML leader Amrit Bohara said the nine-point demand of the two parties was a’ common agenda’.
Congress sought CPN-UML support after Tuesday’s decision to develop an anti-Maoist front.
Congress leader Dr Manindra Rijal also tried to minimize the importance of the agreement by saying both parties weren’t trying to topple the government.
A summit of the two parties was held at the CPN-UML head office Wednesday.
Ailing NC President Girija Prasad Koirala didn’t attend the meeting even as he supported the anti-Maoist drive.
The new development comes after former CPB-UML General
Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal Wednesday told PM Prachanda at a meeting to implement nine demands of the Congress.

Cabinet approves resignation of Bishwanath Upadhaya

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: A cabinet meeting Wednesday accepted the resignation of Bishwanath Upadhaya as member of the CA on recommendation of main opposition Nepali Congress.
The cabinet decided to notify the CA.
Upadhaya if a former chief justice and he was nominated by Congress to head a constitution drafting committee.
He headed a committed that drafted the 1990 constitution thrown into the wastepaper basket by the present rulers.

192 Maoists defect to CPN-UML

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: Altogether 192 Maoist activists, mostly of district level, defected to CPN-UML in the capital Wednesday.
The activists were camped at captured in the Valley.
More defections are expected.
The defections amid CPN-UML support for main opposition demands to implement nine demands, including return of seized asses and dissolution of YCL.

One dead and five injured

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: One person was killed and five others were injured Wednesday evening in a collision between an army vehicle and a motorcycle and a taxi at Maitighar.
An army truck collided against a motorcycle and a taxi.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Full Indian support for beleaguered Prachanda: DP Tripathi

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: A top visiting Indian leader said PM Prachanda has the full support of India after talks with leaders including the prime minister, leaders of other ruling parties and main opposition Nepali Congress.
India has
“After talking with leaders, something is going to happen in Nepal. Leaders are concerned and they are agreed there’s no alternative to political consensus,” DP Tripathi, General Secretary of Indian Nationalist Congress told Ghatana ra Bichar Wednesday.
Tripathi said called for ‘national understanding’ for drafting a constitution and to make a peace process a success.
“Prachandaji has the full support and good wishes of India. Let the campaign for Nepal’s prosperity, peace and reconstruction under his leadership succeed,” the Indian leader who arrived Saturday to review the political situation in Nepal said.” India has helped in the peace process and will continue to help in the future.”
He added: “The peace process should end under Prachanda’s leadership. Nepali people have given Chairman Prachanda a thumping majority. Let the constitution be drafted under his leadership.”
Triupathi lent support to Prachanada and his government amid reports New Delhi is unhappy with the government for close forging close ties with China.
“This government won’t and shouldn’t fall,” he added.

Nepal Army spokesman asks why UNMIN was silent before

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: Nepal Army Spokesman Brig Gen Rahindra Chetri asked why UNMIN was silent when Nepal Army recruited soldiers to fill vacancies before objecting to it now.
Chetri said recruitments were carried out before without objection after signing of a peace agreement between then government and Maoists.
“We also don’t know. Why were objections raised when the previous year’s process was continues?” the general said in reply to a question: But Ian Martin has raised objections.
Budhabar published the interview Wednesday.
“It won’t stop,” Chetri said vowing recruitment to fill 2,800 vacancies will go on.
The army has decided to continue with recruitment disregarding a government directive.
“We started the process after a government decision, within the constitution and law.”
He denied the peace agreement had been violated.
“We have filled in vacancies twice after the peace agreement.
“We haven’t recruited for new positions. Vacancies have been filled through an internal process. We can’t recruit even one recruit above the ceiling fixed by government.
“Army strength hasn’t been increased,” the spokesman said.
He denied a controversy between government and Nepal Army.
“We’ve accepted the constitution, government rules and law.”

PM Prachanda, Madhav Kumar Nepal hold discussions

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: One day after main opposition Nepali Congress decided to build an anti-Maoist alliance with the help of 23 political parties in CA, Prime Minister Prachanda held a two-hour discussion with former CPN-UML General Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal Wednesday.
Nepal is a firm critic of the Maoists in government.
Maoist Spokesman Dinanath Sharma charged Congress was conspiring to isolate Maoists and topple the CPN (Maoist)-led four-month government.
Meanwhile, former Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, head of a nine-member Nepali Congress task force to build an anti-Maoist alliance will begin consultations with other parties later Wednesday.

Congress observing national reconciliation day

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: Main opposition Nepali Congress is observing the 33rd national reconciliation day Wednesday.
The party marks the day when Nepal’s first elected Prime Minister BP Koirala returned from self-exile with other party colleagues in India where Indira Gandhi was ruling at the center to reconcile with the king.
The Congress anti-king and anti-panchayat campaign from across the border didn’t deliver results.
The Gandhi federal government in New Delhi was cooperating with the king then.
Prime Minister Prachanda Tuesday suddenly drove to the BP Memorial Museum in Sundarijal and viewed displays there on the eve of national reconciliation day.

Blackout continues in the far-West

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: A blackout continued in 10 districts of the mid and far-West for the third consecutive day Wednesday.
The region is plunged in darkness since Monday after students took control of a sub-station of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) in Kanchanpur cutting off power supply as they demanded priority in electricity distribution on a priority basis in Kanchanpur.
Industries in the region have closed down and people have been inconvenienced in the middle of winter.
Students took over the sub-station on the day government enforced a crippling 12-hour load-shedding schedule.
Radio broadcasts have been affected.

Sher Bahadur Deuba points a pistol at Dr Minendra Rijal

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: Sher Bahadur Deuba is demanding the expulsion of Dr Manindra Rijal from Nepali Congress and parliament, Janaastha reports.
But sources said President Girija Prasad Koirala is giving him additional responsibilities to attract Rijal towards him.
Rijal is not seen much in the public these days.
Deuba and wife Arjoo were having dinner with some close friends at their home that day over political discussions.
Deuba was suddenly enraged with Rijal in another room.
Deuba brought a pistol from a room upstairs and pointed it at Rijal; Arjoo separated them.
It’s not clear how the misunderstanding developed.
Rijal is considered an extremely close confidante of Deuba; differences have developed now.
The incident occurred three weeks ago.
Dr Rival visited Deuba the day after the incident and the former prime minister was still angry.
According to sources, Rijal went to Deuba to apologize.

Commercial banks propose two-day closure

Kathmandu, 31 Dec: Private banks have proposed to Nepal Rashtra Bank a two-day closure Saturday and Sunday because of increased load-shedding, Kantipur reports.
The Nepal Bankers’ Association has proposed the closure from 1Janauary 2009.
The use of generators and invertors to meet power shortage has increased cost 25 percent.


“”Police were sent abroad of the recommendation of ministers and the IGP. I am facing accusations from various quarters for not making recommendations.”

(Deputy Prime Minister Bamdeb Gautam, Nepal Samacharpatra, 31 Dec.)

“The home ministry didn’t announce the names of martyrs [abound 8,000 plus]. Martyrs can’t be declared just on the recommendation of one ministry; a decision will be made on the recommendation of all parties.”

(Bamdeb Gautam, Nepal Samacharpatra, 31 Dec.)

‘Thamel is just a small market. There are costly and secure places in Kathmandu where plus two students are also ply their trade to meet expenses.”

(Sex worker Sapana Chetri, Naya Patrika, 31 Dec.)

No lights in mid-West

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: At least 10 districts in the mid and far-West have been plunged into darkness.
Students captured a sub-station of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) at Lalpur in Kanchanpur distributing electricity Monday the day government enforced a 12-hour a day load-shedding schedule.
Students demanded Kanchanpur should have the first right to power.

Congress task force to topple Maoists

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Main opposition has formed a nine-member task force headed by former Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to negotiate with other parties in the CA, including ruling parties CPN-UML and Fourm, to topple the four-month Maoist-led government.
Maoists reacted immediately.
Spokesman Dinanath Sharma said Congress was conspiring to isolate Maoists and topple the government.
Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai said attempts to topple the government was only a dream.
Forum Chairman and Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav Tueaday opposed proposed PLA integration in Nepal Army and activities of YCL.

Monday, December 29, 2008

More details on Congress decision to topple Maoist-led govt. (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Main opposition Nepali Congress Tuesday decided to topple the four-month Maoist-led government by splitting the ruling coalition and as army opposed and defied PM Prachanda’s call on Nepal Army to stop recruitment to fill in vacancies.
Army says filling in vacancies is not army expansion; Maoists have threatened to expand PLA whose 19,000 combatants are already in UMNIN camps with weapons.
Nepali Congress and influential CPN-UML leader KP Shama Oli said Prachanda’s directive to Nepal Army is blatant intervention in the state force.
Maoist coalition partners CPN-UML and a divided Forum are dissatisfied with Maoists.
Fifth largest party in CA—TMLP—has already demanded the dissolution of government.
Congress will now be satisfied only with the fall of the Maoist-led government after deciding to continue with its non-cooperation movement and another decision to form a ‘democratic front’ against government.
Maoists are the largest party in the 601-member CA and an alternate government will be as unstable.
The peace process and drafting of the constitution will be adversely affected.
Maoist leaders have charged unnamed foreign powers for trying to topple the government.

Congress decides to seek support against Maoists (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Main opposition Nepali Congress decided Tuesday morning to seek support of other 23 parties, including two main coalition partners of Maoists, around its nine-point demand.
A meeting of party central leaders chaired by party President Girija Prasad Koirala came to the decision Tuesday, according to party Chief Whip Laxman Ghimere.
The party decided to seek the support of coalition ruling parties CPN-UML and Forum as well for the nine-point demand that includes dissolution of YCL and return of seized assets by Maoists.
The meeting decided to continue its boycotts of CA sessions as well.
The decision is important because it now confirms Congress will be satisfied only with the ouster of Maoists from government.

CPN (Unity Center/Mashal) starts

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: A meeting of national workers of CPN(Unity Center/Mashal) started in the capital Tuesday.
The meeting is expected to approve a decision of the central committees of the two parties to merge with CPN (Maoist).

Stone hurled at PM Prachanda

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Prime Minister Prachanda escaped unhurt when students hurled a stone at him in Kirtipur Monday.
Prachanda has gone there to attend a function at Tribhuvan University whose annually assembly met after three years.
An escort vehicle was managed.

Preparations to declare industrial emergency as well

By Shiba Dubadi in Rajdhani

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Government has started work to declare an industrial emergency as well; a power emergency has already been declared.
Industry Minister Astha Laxmi Sakya gave this indication to a FNCCI delegation Monday.
“Government is considering demands of professionals seriously,” a delegation member told Rajdhani after the meeting. ”But adequate homework is necessary for this.”

Maoists boycott Japanese emperor’s birthday celebrations

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Maoists boycotted the 75th birthday celebrations of Japanese Emperor Akahito organized by the Japanese embassy, Dhristi reports.
Prime Minister Prachanda and more than a dozen Maoist leaders had been invited at the function.
The Maoist absence created a stir at the reception.
PM Prachanda had confirmed his participation and security was tight at the reception.
Maoists had earlier boycotted the birthday celebrations of the Thai king as well.

UNMIN Chief Ian Martin being recalled

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: The job of UNMIN Chief Ian Martin is at stake, Dhristi reports quoting unnamed high political sources.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who faced opposition against Martin during a Nepal visit, is recalling him.
The responsibility is being given to Carine Langrine.
Sources said Martin most recently opposed Nepal Army recruitment to fill vacancies to fill vacancies.

File before council of ministers
TIA security being handed over to Indians?

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai and his wife Tourism Minister Hishila Yami are preparing to handover the country’s sovereignty to India, Dhristi reports.
Dr Bhattarai has already given Indian vehicles facilities like in Sikkim.
Yami has decided to handover responsibilities of security at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) to India; the decision will be a big setback for a sovereign country like Nepal.
Following the Mumbai terrorist attack, Indians are pressing Nepal to handover responsibilities of security at the airport to India. Passengers already had to be screened at the airport before flying to India.
The decision of the tourism ministry has to be okayed by the ministries of home and defence.
The secret file for handing over security is at the office of the council of ministers.
The file was to be presented at a meeting of the council of ministers last Thursday; it wasn’t presented because of the absence of tourism minister Yami.
Other political parties in government have maintained a surprising silence on such a serious issue.


“It’s not that easy to weaken us. Those who tried to split us before out national conference have realized we are different and far-sighted.”

(PM Prachanda, Janadisha, 30 Dec.)

“The Maoists must respect the people’s power [by handing over weapons to government] rather then threaten them with guns, bullets and armies.”

(Madhav Kumar Nepal, The Rising Nepal, 30 Dec.)

Israel out of bounds for Nepalis

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Israel is temporarily out of bounds for Nepali workers after the most recent outbreak of violence in the region.
Government took the decision Sunday.

Nepal Telecom suspends teleprinter/telex services

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Nepal Telecom will suspend teleprinter/telex services from 1 January 2009 at national and international levels.
The services are being suspended because of ‘advancement of technology in telecommunications’, an announcement said.

Nepal, EU meeting on 15 January
Kathmandu, 30 Dec: The sixth meeting of the Nepal-EU joint commission is being held in Brussels 15 January.
Foreign Secretary Gyan Chandra Acharya is leading the Nepali delegation.
The meeting will discuss the peace process, refugee issue, human rights and EU assistance.

Nepal, Bahrain air accord

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Nepal and Bahrain signed an air accord Monday to increase frequency of air services between the two destinations and develop manpower resources.
Bahrain Air plans to start Nepal operations soon.
Twenty-four weekly flights will now link the two countries.

Constitution committee elections on 9 January

Kathmandu, 30 Dec: Elections for chairmen of 14 CA committees drafting a constitution will now be held 9 January.
The vote should have been held by Tuesday [30 Dec.].
CA Chairman Subash Nemwang announced the date for election after consulting 25 parties in the assembly.


“Feudalism and its remnants sill remain in the education sector.”

(PM Prachanda, Kantipur, 30 Dec.)

‘The unification process [between RPP and Rashtriya Janasakti Party] is underway.”

(RPP General Secretary Dhruba bahadur Pradhan, The Himalayan Times, 30 Dec.)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Girija, Oli oppose govt. intervention in army

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Congress President Girija Prasad Koirala and CPN-UML leader KP Sharma Oli held discussions Sunday, Rajdhani reports.
Both leaders opposed government intervention in Nepal Army drive to fill vacancies through recruitment.
The process was started through permission of Public Service Commission and Defence Ministry.
They concluded the government obstruction to the recruitment is political intervention in army affairs.
[Note: Army rejected PM Prachanda’s directive to stop recruitment.]

Maoist union lifts obstruction

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: A Maoist-affiliated union Monday temporarily lifted obstructions at the Biratnagar regional office of Kantipur Publications following an overnight agreement between government representatives and journalists.
Printing of regional issues of publishing were obstructed for nearly one week because of obstructions.
The obstructions were lifted for one week to meet journalist demands.
Publication officials entered the office premises after the blockade lifting.

Agreement to ensure additional Muslim representation

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: An agreement was reached Monday morning to increase representation of Muslims in a CA procedural committee from 61 to 63 to include Muslim representatives.
Amid threats from the religious minority group, the representation was increased by two seats.
The group was threatening to obstruct assembly proceedings.


“Speaking against army integration is not linked to earning seized property. So those doing so are monarchists proclaiming themselves to so-called democrats.”

(Maoist military leader Barsha Man Pun Ananta, RSS report in The Rising Nepal, 29 Dec.)

“We don’t want settle down as agriculturists. Permit us to stay in the jungle and fell down trees.”

(Ratue [nomad] leader Ain Bahadur Shahi demanding unrestricted, free movement in country’s 75 districts, Janadisha, 29 Dec.)

“Army has expressed grave dissatisfaction with UNMIN Chief Ian Martin’s attempt to nurture Maoist plan to end the identity of Nepal Army. Martin has started a latest serious drive by obstructing plans to fill vacancies in Nepal Army.”

(Jana Bhawana, 29 Dec.)

“Maoist eyes opened after only three months [Nepal Army demand for recruits through advertisement in government media].
Likewise, Martin’s came to know of it [filling in vacancies] only one week after Martin’s tenure was extended.”

(Tarun, 29 Dec.)

Two killed in Saptari firing (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Two persons were killed Monday morning in retaliatory firing by police at a village in Saptari.
Police returned fire after a patrol was attacked as violence continues in the south.
Four bombers escaped and explosives were recovered from suspected rebels.
Five persons were injured, including three children of one family in a bomb blast in neighbouring Sarlahi overnight.
The children were aged between five and 10.
Nitesh Kumar Thakur, 12, and Prabachan Thakur, 16, are in serious condition—one has head injuries.
Saptari and Sarlahi are districts worst affected by the terai insurgency.

Higher secondary schools reopen

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Higher secondary schools reopened Monday throughout the nation after a forced closure by teachers demanding permanent status and perks.
Government Sunday evening agreed to consider teacher demands.

12-hour load-shedding starts

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Increased 12-hour load-shedding was enforced nationwide Monday morning in the midst of winter.
Government for the first time also announced a power emergency.
Critics say government plans to install expensive thermal plants to meet shortage isn’t a practical solution.
Load-shedding has been increased for the third time in one month.
Noisy thermal plans will take months to install as critics charged thermal mafia is pushing purchase of machinery.
One practical solution that will have immediate impact is to launch a national campaign to save energy by installing energy-saving replace electricity bulbs.
Prime Minister Prachanda said load-shedding will be increased to 18 hours every day in early 2009.

Congress likely to boycott CA session for sixth time Monday

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Main opposition Nepali Congress is likely to again boycott Monday’s afternoon session of the constituent assembly (CA) for the sixth time.
Congress is now demanding Prime Minister Prachanda announced a deadline to meet nine demands, including dissolution of YCL and return of seized assets during the insurgency.
Prachanda said the opposition demand is already a government programme and argued there was no need to announced a fixed deadline.
Maoists are facing opposition from within the party to meet opposition demands; top leaders of the party leading government even say CPN (Maoist) hasn’t seized property.
Dissolution of YCL and return of seized assets were Congress pre-conditions to hold the April elections won by Maoists; but Congress abandoned the now resurrected demands to hold hasty elections to declare the country a republic.
Congress that was ruling also ignored seizure of government assets in the capital even though the party controlled the home minister under Krishna Prasad Shitaula charged for protecting Maoists just to conduct elections.
Congress has disrupted assembly proceedings for nearly one month now even as committees meet to discuss drafting a constitution by May 2010.
Chairmen of the 14 committees are yet to be elected though.

Nepali priests appointed in Pashupati (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 29 Dec: Two Nepali priests have been appointed for the first time Sunday to conduct puja at Pashupatinath temple complex, the country’s holiest shrine, Pashupatinath Development Trust (PDT) said.
PDP has appointed Dr Bishnu Prasad Dahal and Basuki Salikram Dhakal to conduct pujas at Pashupatinath and Bsuki temple in the temple complex.
Three Indian priests called bhattas resigned and the PDT accepted their resignations.
Bhattas had been offering worship at Nepal’s holiest Hindu shrine from the Malla period.
The Trust appointed the Nepali priests and not the government to break a tradition.
There had been demands to past governments to appoint Nepalis and make transparent the temple income.
Three bhattas had submitted their resignations to government more the government this month.

Supreme court to decide on Charles Shobraj 13 January

Kathmandu, 29dec: Supreme court is scheduled to five its verdict on the murder charge against notorious international French serial killer Charles Shobraj 13 January, the court said.
A Kathmandu district court has already convicted him for the murder of American national Connie Zo Bronzich in 1975 in the capital during the hippie movement.

Expected political breakthrough elusive

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: An expected breakthrough in a national political impasse was elusive Sunday when main opposition Nepali Congress again walked out of a CA session even though the body that also acts as a parliament met after more than a four-delay to enable political players to find an outlet.
Congress demanded a deadline – 15 days or even one month-- from Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda to meet nine demands, including dissolution of YCL and return of seized assets.
Congress leader Laxman Ghimere also demanded a personal statement from Prachanda.
Following a meeting with Nepali Congress leaders, an emergency session of the cabinet adopted the Congress demands as a government policy that would be implemented.
Prime Minister Prachanda was expected to announce the cabinet session at the CA session following the one-agenda meeting of the cabinet to discuss and adopt Congress demand.
Congress leaders consulted ailing party President Girija Prasad Koirala after a meeting with Maoists and decided to again boycott the CA session.
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Bandeb Gautam said Sunday he was ready to handover leadership of a proposed special integration committee on armies to Maoist Chairman and Prime Minister Prachanda.
The formation of the special committee didn’t figure in Maoist, Congress discussions Sunday.
Gautam also said implementing Congress demands was government responsibility.
Congress isn’t satisfied with government assurances the demands will be implemented by district committees or by the formation of a parliamentary committee to determine assets seized during a 10-year Maoist people’s war.
Firm Maoist critic and CPN-UML leader KP Sharma Oli held discussions with ailing Koirala Sunday evening and discussed integration of PLA in Nepal Army which has rejected a Prachanda directive to stop filling in vacancies in the army.
Army sources said filling in vacancies wasn’t tantamount to army expansion and won’t affect the peace process.

10-point govt., journalist agreement

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Agitating journalists and government reached a late night agreement Sunday to implement 10 agreements.
Journalists suspended their anti-government agitation following an agreement.
“Only agitation has been suspended. Agreement implementation will be observed,” said journalist Ramesh Bista after the agreement.

Jwala Singh agrees to sit down for talks with govt.

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Jwala Singh of Terai Janatantrik agreed to conditional talks with government Sunday evening demanding release of three jailed members at a prison in Morang.
Singh telephoned journalists in Saptari saying the three jailed activists are members of the group’s dialogue team with government, radio reports said.
Government has been conducting separate talks with groups in the south.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Higher secondary schools again closed

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Teachers Sunday again forcibly closed down higher secondary schools nation-wide.
Teachers are demanding permanent job status and other perks.

Army again says no to govt. pressure not to full in vacancies through fresh recruitment

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Nepal Army will continue its recruitment drive to fill in 2,884 vacancies through fresh recruitment, Lilaraj Khanal reports in Rajdhani.
Army is preparing a formal letter after defence ministry directive to stop the fresh recruitment drive.
“The letter is being sent Sunday,” a senior military source told Rajdhani. “Vacancies are being filled in without creating new posts. This won’t affect the peace process.”
Prime Minister Prachanda and Chief of Army Staff Gen Rukmangud Katawal discussed the issue Friday.
Last week UNMIN Chief Ian Martin issued a statement saying the recruitment is against the spirit of the peace accord; a senior army official expressed dissatisfaction with the statement.
“Martin has been issuing statements to support Maoists,“ a meeting of senior army officials concluded Saturday. ‘UNMIN is active in inciting Maoists. UNMIN, ICRC and other foreign organizations are working not to resolve the conflict in Nepal but to encourage it.”
The meeting also concluded UNMIN should work monitor anarchic activities of Maoists instead of objecting to work of the Nepal Army conducted with government permission.

Govt., journalists hold second round meeting

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: After an inconclusive first round meeting last week, representatives of government and protesting journalists began another round of dialogue Sunday to address conflicting demands.
Journalists under the banner of Alliance for Press Freedom are demanding an end of attacks of media houses and forced closure of publications including the Biratnagar editions of The Kathmandu Post and Kantipur.
The Alliance journalists have been holding daily protests for the last eight days demanding action against attackers and compensation.
But Maoist journalists are demanding reinstatement of dismissed workers in Himalmedia.
Government dialogue team is headed by Communication Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara.

Breakthrough in effort to resolve political impasse

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal will make a formal statement in the CA Sunday on implementing nine demands of main opposition Nepali Congress following a cabinet meeting to legally implement the demands.
The cabinet is meeting to implement demands, including the dissolution of the YCL and return of seized assets.
An agreement was reached Sunday morning in talks between Nepali Congress and Maoists, their leaders Dinanath Sharma and Laxman Ghimere said after the meeting.
Nepali Congress had planned to disrupt proceedings of the constituent assembly for the fifth time Sunday afternoon.
The main opposition has been demanding a formal statement from Prime Minister Prachanda on its demand the CPN (Maoist) meet nine demands including return of seized assets.
The breakthrough comes after a meeting between CPN-UML and Maoists to break a deadlock.


“Final ultimatum to Maoists. CPN-UML central committee meeting prioritized consensus politics and issued a stern warning to the Maoist-led government to change its work style.”

(Report in CPN-UML mouthpiece Chalphal, 28 Dec.”

Second blast in capital, in two days (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Nobody was injured in another bomb blast in the capital at Jamal Sunday morning—the second in the capital in two days.
The bomb hidden in a garbage bin went off at seven in the morning.
A woman was injured in the first blast Saturday morning in an explosion in front of the main gate of the Tribhuvan International Airport- Nepal’s only international airport.
Ranabir Singh group claimed responsibility for the first bombing demanding a Hindu state.
A secular state was declared by an unelected parliament after the April 2005 movement.
Until then, Nepal was the world’s only Hindu kingdom.

82-hour lead shedding from Monday

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 28 Dec: Unable to meet increased power demand, Maoist-led government is enforcing a 82-hour a week load-shedding schedule from Monday blaming previous administrations for the power shortage.
Maoists have been in most recent government for only four months; but they joined a government led by Girija Prasad Koirala after a royal regime was toppled in April 2005 and a republic was finally declared.
Load-shedding will be increased to 12 hours from 10 hours six days in a week and for 10 hours the remaining day.
Government is declaring a power emergency and Prime Minister Prachanda has warned power cuts will be increased to 18 hours a week in March/April 2009.
Prachanda is flying for Norway, Denmark and Finland to discuss the power cuts and the resultant crisis it will create with the Scandinavian governments 17 January 2009.
The left Scandinavian governments have been supporting Nepal’s communist and Maoist movements politically and financially.
The Maoist-led government is also planning to declare two-day national holiday every week to save power at government offices.
Prachanda admitted government will face a grave crisis with increased power cuts and industrial production will be directly hit.
Government has announced emergency plans to establish thermal power plants to increase electricity output in a country with vast untapped hydro power potential.
Government faces an emergency even as inflation jumped to over 14 percent despite promises to limit to single digit.


“CPN-UML former general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal claimed that he was the only leader left to run the nation. He asserted that he has remained as the only alternative to give leadership to the nation as Maoists were also proved failure in doing something new as expected by Nepali people.”

(RSS report, The Rising Nepal, 28 Dec.)

‘Sometimes, even local leaders of political p[arties in the government orchestrate abductions for their advantage. They also make others threaten us [VDC secretaries] over phone.”

(Siraha VDC secretary Bajaram Yadav, The Kathmandu Post, 28 Dec.)

“They extort in the name of underground outfits only to built houses or buy land. After amassing a small fortune, they ditch the outfits. This is what some leaders of so-called terai-based underground armed outfits do in the name of he movement.”

{The Kathmandu Post, 28 Dec.”

Maoist, CPN-UML understanding

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: CPN (Maoist) and CPN-UML reached an understanding at a summit of the two parties Saturday to return seized assets and vacate government facilities occupied by Maoists, UML leader Surendra Pandey said.
Maoists agreed to vacate occupied government facilities within three days at Balaju Industrial Estate and Trolley Bus, Pandey said.
Maoists have agreed to return seized assets beginning with captured property of UML workers, he said.
Talks will continue Sunday on appointments to commissions and other vacate government positions.
The six-hour meeting was held after a UML central committee agreed to continue in the Maoist-led coalition amid dep differences on government functioning.

Open split in MJF

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: A split in the ruling MJP surfaced openly in the biggest terai party Saturday.
Co-coordinator and Agriculture Minister Jayaprakash Prasad Gupta and
Transport Minister Bijaya Kumar Gachedhar inaugurated and attended a Morang district committee Saturday as a rival group led by Coordinator and Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav opposed the meeting.
The Yadav group called a Morang strike to disrupt the meeting which was held two months ago, according to the Yadav group.
Gupta and Gachedhar charged there was no inner-party democracy.
A rival district meeting was held Saturday amid earlier rumours Gupta and Gacheddhar had resigned from government.

June mills to close down Sunday

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Workers will force the closure of nine jute mills in Morang and Sunsari from Sunday, they said.
Workers are demanding increased pay commensurate with increased salaries of government workers.

More details on Kathmandu airport blast

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Two suspects of a bomb blast at Tribhuvan International Airport, the country’s only international airport, were arrested Saturday immediately after the minor explosion.
They are of terai descent.
A woman injured in the explosion at the main entrance of the airport has returned home after medical treatment at a hospital in the capital.
A bomb was hurled by two persons who came in a van, eyewitnesses said.
A group that claimed responsibility also issued anti-Maoist slogans.

Woman injured in Kathmandu airport bomb blast (BREAKING NEWS)

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: A woman was injured in a bomb blast at the main entrance of the capital’s Tribhuvan International Airport Saturday.
A shutter of Buddha Air was damaged.
Ranabir Sena of terai claimed responsibility.
The group is demanding a Hindu state after the Hindu kingdom was declared secular after April 2005.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Army opposed PM Prachanda’s directive to stop recruitment

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Prime Minister Prachanda and Chief of the Army Staff Gen Rukmangud Katawal held discussions Friday on security issues including recruitment to fill vacancies in Nepal Army.
Maoists are opposed to the recruitment and have threatened to start recruitment in the PLA as well amid charges army was violating a peace accord.
The meeting comes after UNMIN formally said the army recruitment was against the spirit of a peace accord between government and Maoists.
According to highly placed source, the prime minister directed the army chief to stop recruitment, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
But a high military source said the army chief told the prime minister the process in its final stages cannot be stopped even from a legal standpoint.
Fifty thousand have applied to fill 2,400 vacancies.
Meanwhile, three ruling parties and the main opposition Nepali Congress agreed to resolve a dispute in the formation of a special committee for army integration by expanding the committee by including two party representatives from each party in the committee as demanded by Congress.
But a new problem emerged with Maoist demand Prime Minister Prachanda should now head the committee chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Bamdeb Gautam; Congress opposed the fresh Maoist demand.
Maoists, CPN-UML, MJF and Nepali Congress are in the committee.
Only two months remain to integrate nearly 19,000 former Maoist combatants in the army.
Major parties are opposed to mass integration of Maoists in Nepal Army.

Prices of POL products

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Prices of POL were reduced Saturday for the fourth time in three months.
LPG price was slashed by Rs 50 to Rs 1,150 per cylinder.
Petrol price was reduced Rs 5 to Rs 80.50 per liter; diesel and kerosene price were reduced Rs 1 to Rs 59.50 per liter.

Former army chief cleared

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Former Army Chief Gen Pyar Jung Thapa was cleared Friday by CIAA on charge of mismanaging nearly Rs 18 million in state funds.
Gen Thapa was charged for mismanaging the money during the April 2005 movement that toppled a royal regime.

Indian leader in town

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Ruling Indian National Congress General Secretary DP Tripathi arrived Friday.
He is holding consultations with Prime Minister Prachanda and other political party leaders.

Bhrikuti Paper Mill closed down

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Bhrikuti Paper Mill in Nawalparasi and Nepal’s largest paper mill, has closed down.
Workers are demanding increased pay to match increase salary of government employees.

Former crown princes Himani flies for Paris

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Former Crown Princess Himani flew Friday for Paris where she is expected to stay for two weeks.
Her husband Paras, who was also in town, left for Singapore Sunday.

Explosion in terai school

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Nobody was injured in an explosion at a school near Rajbiraj overnight.
Violence continues unabated in the south.

Nepal Airlines to fly to Doha

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Nepal Airlines will start thrice weekly flights between Kathmandu and Doha from 1 January 2009.
Nepal Airlines will fly to Doha, in Qatar, every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Doha is the state airlines’ second destination in the Gulf.

Two Maoists surrender

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Two Maoists accused for attacking staff at Himalmedia Sunday surrendered to local authorities in Lalitpur Friday.
Ramesh Babu Pant and Ramesh KC surrendered; they will be produced before authorities Sunday.,

Sri Lankan president coming

Kathmandu, 27 Dec: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajpakshya is arriving
In February 2009, according to Annapurna Post.
PM Prachanda invited him while attending the September session of the UN general assembly.


“Monarchy has ended; but monarchy’s presence in society, political parties and tradition still hasn’t fallen.”

(PM Prachanda, Janadisha, 27 Dec.)

“Koirala’s [Girija] psychology in undoubtedly authoritarian. This has crated a lot of problems in Congress.”l

(Pradip Giri, Naya Patrika, 27 Dec.)

“The prime minister has forgotten the national dress. I salute the president for honouring the national dress.”

(Madhav Kumar Nepal, The Kathmandu Post, 27 Dec.)

CPN-UML to continue in govt.

Kathmandu, 26 Dec: CPN-UML will continue inn the Maoist-led government despite differences with the CPN (Maoist).
UML General Secretary Jhalanath Khanal said this at the end of an extended central committee meeting Friday.
Khanal said the government was a compulsion even as main opposition Nepali Congress continues a jihad against the tenuous government.
Nepali Congress again boycotted the CA session Friday amid fears a constitution won’t be drafted within May 2100.
Present rulers and Congress staged a constitutional coup after April 2005 even as they forced then King Gyanendra to reinstate a dissolved parliament through an illegal and unconstitutional ‘political decision’.

Capital received first winter rain

Kathmandu, 26 Dec: The capital experienced its first winter rain Friday afternoon.
The light rain that extended for about 60 minutes was accompanied by a light hail.
Temperatures fell immediately.
Farmers welcomed the rain though.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Three youth buried alive in Bajura

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Three male youth aged between 15 to 19 years were buried at a village in Majura while digging for mud Thursday morning.
Five others have been injured.
Mud is used to paint and clean homes in Nepal.

Govt. journalist talks inconclusive

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: The first round of talks Thursday between government and journalists to develop a crisis after a Maoist attack on Himalmedia was inconclusive.
Teams headed by Communication Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara and a journalist team headed by Debendra Jha dispersed with an agreement to meet again.
Maoist unions have been demanding reinstatement of sacked workers in Himalmedia.

New Delhi instructions have come

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Indian national and a candidate in the CA election Amresh Kumar Singh has come to Nepal with instructions of the Indian government, Janadharana reports.
He held discussions with the prime minister, finance minister and leaders of Congress, UML, Forum and TMLP and relayed to them he Indian instructions.
According to sources, India wants immediate finalization of an extradition treaty and an agreement on the Kosi high dam.
Singh told the prime minister Chinese foreign minister during a recent Nepal visit a stronger warning than in 1960 on Chinese readiness to protect Nepal’s sovereignty.
During a meeting with Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam, Singh discussed a permanent arrangement to place TIA under Indian security cordon.
.The Indian plan is to retain the government with street protests by Nepali Congress and terai parties.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Mid-Marshyangdhi closed down on inauguration day; resumes operation January

Kaathmandu, 25 Dec: Mid-Marshyangdhi Director Sunil Kumar Dhungel said the power plant will resume operation only on 15January 2009, according to Gorkhapatra.
The German-aided plant was inaugurated this month by Prime Minister Prachanda and closed down the same evening.
The power plant was inaugurated hurriedly without completing work.

Indian threat to PM Prachanda

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Even as Prime Minister Prachanda said foreign powers were conspiring against the government, Indian government Tuesday issued an indirect threat Tuesday through a Nepali representative, Janaastha reports.
Amresh Kumar Singh came to Nepal Saturday after a fortnight’s stay in India and held discussions with Prachanda. He also met other leaders like Deputy Prime Minister Bamdeb Gautam, former Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala, Sher Bahadur Deuba, Dr Baburam Bhattarai, Upendra Yadav, Rajendra Mahoto and Mahanata Thakur and is returning to New Thursday.
He informed them of India’s dissatisfaction and is going back with their ideas.
India is unhappy with frequent visits of Chinese officials and help.
“I feel Indian policymakers can’t be satisfied with the present government,” Singh told Ghatana ra Bichar.” I am confident the longevity of this government will be determined by the CPN-UML leadership chosen by its general convention.”
[Singh was a Nepali Congress-nominated member of the last parliament. He came into prominence as a person permanently planted by India at Baluwatar when Girija was prime minister.]


“ Surveying the present political situation, there’s only slight possibility of drafting a constitution. In my private conversations with political party leaders they don’t feel a constitution will be drafted in Nepal.”

(Amresh Kumar Singh, Ghatana ra Bichar, 25 Dec.)

ICRC recommendation to Nepal govt.
Kathmandu, 25 Dec: International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has recommended to theGovernment of Nepal to amend where necessary the draft "Bill on enforceddisappearance of persons" to bring it in closer compliance so that thefamilies of those who disappeared in the conflict can apply to the MissingPersons Commission and have their needs addressed, a ICRC announcement said.
The proposed commission is yet to be formed.During the 10-year conflict in Nepal between 1996 and 2006 thousands havebeen killed and over one thousand families still have no information on thefate or whereabouts of their loved ones.nnnn

Army no to govt. directive to stop recruitment

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: The Nepal Army Wednesday rejected the Ministry of Defence’s instruction that it stop recruitment additional soldiers, confirming perception about mounting tensions between the two state organs, Prakah Rimal reports in The Himalayan Times.
According to Defence Ministry sources, Chief of Army Staff Rokmandgud Katawal have told the Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal that the army would go ahead with the fresh intake to fill the vacant posts and that the recruitment cannot be stopped at this stage. “A written reply will be sent to the ministry on Friday,” another source said.
Th army is on a nationwide campaign to recruit some 2,600 personnel at lower ranks, ‘mostly non-combatants’, a source said.
UNMIN Special Representative Ian Martin Tuesday wrote to the Ministry of Defence Tuesday wrote to the Ministry of Defence saying recruitment by Nepal Army or PLA would be a breach of the ceasefire code of conduct, the comprehensive peace agreement and the agreement on monitoring of the management of arms and armies.
“If the government wanted to stop the recruitment, it should have done so before the applications were invited on November 2 and 3. The army cannot go back in its decision, which is well within the guidelines of the recruitment process,” the source said.
“It is a regular process. The Minister should take back his decision by allowing the recruitment process to continue.”
Army sources said the recruitment campaign had been started to make NA inclusive, as per the interim constitution. The army sources said the recruitment followed the PSC guidelines in keeping with the constitution.

[Note: A Maoist commander said Maoists will also start recruitment even though their combatants are in camps watched by UNMIN.]

Govt okays thermal plant

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: The cabinet meeting Wednesday decided to bear a yearly loss of more than Rs 5 billion and go for installation of a 200-MW thermal plant, The Kathmandu Post reports.
The plant will generate power for eight hours a day for 240 days year.
The meeting endorsed ‘National Energy Crisis Reconciliation Working Plan 2065’ which comprises short-term, mid-term and long-term programmes to deal with the energy crisis.
According to the cabinet decision, either Nepal Electricity Authority to the private sector can install the plant. The government will provide a grant of Rs 9.6 billion to the party that decides to install the thermal plant.
[Note: Prime Minister Prachanda said load-shedding will be increased to 18 hour5s everyday from March/ April while declaring a power emergency for the first time in Nepal. Critics say load-shedding isn’t a solution and other measures should be adopted charging a thermal mafia is behind efforts to push the thermal idea.]

CA member Bishwanath Prasad Agrawal expelled from

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Bishwanath Prasad Agrawal has been expelled from ordinary membership of Nepali Janata Dal and the CA for anti-party activities Wednesday.
The decision has been conveyed to the CA officially.


“There’s no possibility of the present government collapsing; it will continue until the new constitution is drafted and the completion of the peace process.”

(PM Prachanda, Gorkhapatra, 25 Dec.)

“The foreign minister is now being called an international beggar. My work is to extend a begging hand wherever I go.”

(Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav, Jandisha, 25 Dec.)

Nepal for first time declares Christmas holiday

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Government for the first time declared a public holiday on Christmas Thursday.
Nepal is Hindu-majority state even after it was declared a secular state in 2005; the country was previously a Hindu monarchical state.
Nepal is probably the world’s only country where public holidays are declared to celebrate world religions.
The initiative started 2008.

Govt., journalists talk

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Government and agitating journalists are holding talks Thursday to discuss
a crisis after Sunday’s attack on Himalmedia by a Maoist union.
Journalists have protested the attack after which Maoists forced the closure of the Biratnagar regional unit of Kantipur Publications which published The Kathmandu Post and Kantipur.
Maoists said they are pressing workers’ rights which management says have been met.
Government has directed Communications Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara to initiate talks with journalists to resolve the dispute.

CPN-UML meets Thursday

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: CPN-UML central committee meets for the fourth consecutive day Thursday to finalize a political report of General Secretary Jhalanath Khanal and organizational change report of Amrit Bohara ahead of the party general convention February 2009 in Butwal..
Bohra has recommended removing the suffix UML from the party’s name.
The party is also resurrecting the post of chairman vacant after the death of Mahmohan Adhikari, the world’s first elected communist prime minister.
The party is also creating new posts of vice-chairmen and other office bearers.
The committee meting is expected to conclude Thursday.

Police provided bullet in murders of Kathmandu teenagers

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Arbijndra Pandit of Armed Nepal Police provided the crude weapon and bullet used in the murders of teenagers Ashish and Rohit, Annapurna Post reports.
This has come to light in a police probe.
Arbindra is brother-in-law of chief murder suspect Rajendra Pandit.

Govt. to end subsidies for festivals

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Government has decided to end subsidies for all festivals and cultural events from the next fiscal year, Annapurna Post reports.
Cabinet took a decision last Wednesday.
Resources will have be mobilized locally henceforth.

8,500 declared martyrs

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Cabinet Wednesday declared 8,500 persons killed during the Maoist rebellion, revolts of indigenous people and Madesh martyrs.
Peace Minister Janardhan Sharma Prabhakar presented a proposal to declare martyrs.

Pilot, co-pilot survive crash

Kathmandu, 25 Dec: Pilot and co-pilot of a Nepal Airlines Twin Otter survived a crash Wednesday at Tribhuvan International Airport during takeoff.
The pilots survived with minor injuries when the aircraft skidded into a fence.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Birgunj businessman shot dead

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: Birgunj businessman Rajesh Kyal was shot dead Monday night at his home overnight by unknown person who fled.
Kyal died while being rushed to hospital.
The businessman was shot dead as violence continues in the south.

Blank editorial page protests

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: Leading newspapers in the capital Tuesday morning blanked their editorial columns to protest Sunday’s attack on staffers of Himalmedia by Maoists.
The protest was organized by Media Society and Editors’ Alliance.
Prime Minister Prachanda condemned the attack and ordered Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam to take action against the guilty. Nnnn

Maoist government under fire in CPN-UML meet

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: CPN-UML central committee meets for the second day Tuesday amid mounting criticism of Maoists in government amid threats to quit it.
The second largest coalition in he Maoist-led government is preparing to draft a warning to Maoists the four-month coalition will confront a crisis if Maoists don’t change their behaviour.
Central committee members charges Monday Maoists aren’t implementing agreements.
Maoists have received similar threats from MJF, the other coalition partner as well.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has also launched a non-cooperation movement against Maoists amid fears a constitution may not be drafted within the remaining 18-month deadline.
Nepali Congress has started boycotting the CA sessions where the constitution is being discussed.
Chairmen of 14 committees where the constitution is being discussed haven’t been elected as yet.

Maoist threat to start new PLA recruitment

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: Maoist Deputy Commander Chandra Prasad Khanal Baldeb revealed Monday Maoists are preparing to start recruitment in the PLA even amid demands for integration of former combatants in Nepal Army.
“Because Nepal army hasn’t stopped recruitment, the PLA will also start recruitment,” Tuesday’s newspapers quoted Baldeb as saying while inspecting camps in Nawalparasi.
He said Prime Minister Prachanda and UNMIN have been informed of recruitment plans saying OPLA strength will be increased to 35,000.
The threat to start recruitment will start a new controversy in the future of the peace process.
Major parties, including main opposition Nepali Congress, oppose mass integration; Congress has also boycotted a special integration committee demanding two seats in it.

Revenue collection up

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: Revenue collection increased 33.1 percent to Rs 43.06 billion in the first five months of the current fiscal year 2008/09, the finance ministry said.
Government collected Rs 32.36 billion in the corresponding period the previous year.
The Maoist-led government targets to collect Rs 141 billion in revenue the current fiscal year.

NPC Vice-chairman Dr Pitambar Sharma ressigns

Kathmandu, 23 Dec: National Planning Commission (NPC) Vice-chairman Dr Pitambar Sharma has resigned, The Himalayan Times said quoting senior official Janak Joshi.
Dr Sharma, a Maoist-appointee, was disaprr4ed with appointment of NPC members without consulting him.
Among those appointed was a sister of Maoist Minister Hishila Yami.

Friday, December 19, 2008

One shot dead, another injured in encounter

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: One terai rebel was shot dead and another was injured in an encounter with police overnight at Panbari in Siraha.
The rebel died while being rushed to hospital; a Chinese pistol was recovered from him.
Another injured rebel is undergoing treatment at Lahan hospital.
Two rebels have been arrested.
The rebels fired on the police patrol triggering the encounter.
Violence is escalating in the south as formal government, rebel dialogue is yet start on addressing regional demands.
Meanwhile, one person was injured Friday evening in a shooting incident in neighbouring Sarlahi district.
Prakash Rijal of hill descent was seriously injured in the firing.
Meanwhile, Minister Bijaya Kumar Gachedhar has been banned from entering the terai.
Gachedhar, a leader of the MJF, was banned by a front of the party after speaking against the concept of One Madesh, One Pradesh.
Gachedhar also charged Party Chairman and Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav for instigating people in the party against him.

President to visit India in January

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: President Dr Ram BaranYadav will visit India in the last week of January during celebrations in New Delhi to mark Republic Day on 26 January, foreign ministry sources said.
Final dates are still being worked out.
A formal invitation was delivered by Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee during his Nepal visit.
Dr Yadav will be traveling abroad for the first time after becoming president.

Korean built hospital handed over

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: A 50-bed $ 1,340,000 hospital constructed with Korean International Cooperative Agency (KOICA) investment at Thimi was handed over to the government Friday by Ambassador Hong Sungmog.
Ambassador Hong said the hospital was a symbol of friendship between South Korea and Nepal.

CPN-UML hasn’t accepted PM Prachanda offer; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: CPN-UML hasn’t yet accepted this week’s invitation of Prime Minister Prachanda to Madhav Kumar Nepal to head the 61-member constitution main drafting committee which is represented by all 25 political parties in the constituent assembly (CA).
The prime minister offered the invitation unilaterally to the former general secretary of the CPN-UML without consulting other political parties in the CA.
CPN-UML standing committee members Friday suggested Nepal should accept the invitation only after other parties back Prachanda’s offer.
The second party in the ruling coalition has taken the Prachanda offer cautiously.
Meanwhile, CPN (Maoist) Saturday is trying to promote consensus by holding separate discussions with main opposition Nepali Congress and the CPN-UML by discussing major issues including the delayed formation of a special committee for integration of Nepal and PLA.
CPN-UML has suggested in to days of successive meetings with CPN (Maoist) Thursday and Friday, the party leading the Maoist-led government should accept Congress demand for two seats in the special committee to break a deadlock.
Main opposition Nepali Congress has demanded two seats in the committee which also has representatives of Maoists, CPN-UML and MJF.
The committee hasn’t started work after the main opposition stayed away from it and CPN-UML and MJF opposed blanket integration of former Maoist combatants in the state army.
Top Maoist leader Mohan Baidya Kiran, given responsibility for party organization, indicated CPN (Maoist) may accept a CPN-UML suggestion to break the impasse.
“The demand [for equal representation] is not a big issue. We are discussing equal representation for the Congress in the party. We hold discussions with the Congress for a resolution,” Kiran told Bimarsha Friday.
CPN (Maoist) has two representatives in the special committee.

Paddy production increases 5.2 percent

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: Paddy production increased 5.2 percent
in the current fiscal year according to preliminary estimates of the agriculture ministry, Kantipur reports.
Production is expected to increase to 4.52 million tonnes this year from 4.3 tonnes the previous year.
The production increased despite heavy crop losses to floods in the east and far-west.
Production increased because of timely and adequate monsoon and increased land under cultivation.
Maize production increased by 2.8 percent to 1.93 million tones; maize is the country’s second crop.

Foreign ministry denies Pakistan newspaper report Mumbai terror suspect arrested in Nepal

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 20 Dec: Nepal’s foreign ministry Friday denied a Pakistani newspaper report a suspect held in India for the Mumbai terror attacks was arrested in Nepal and handed.
“The ministry hereby refutes the news report in the strongest terms and states Ajmal Kasab was either arrested in Nepal nor was he handed over to any other country,” a ministry report said.
A report in The News published 15 December claimed Kasab was kidnapped from Nepal before 2006.
The ministry said the report was baseless.
The Pakistani newspaper report appeared before a demand by Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari western countries share information Mumbai raid was launched from Pakistan.


“There’s no alternative to the king for the country. The country is heading for civil war without monarchy. Those who said everything will flourish in a republic are now regretting.”

(RPP-Nepal Chairman Kamal Thapa, Rajdhani, 20 Dec.)

“He [Girija Prasad Koirala] is only now searching for democrats through a national awareness campaign. He’s finally recovering his senses.”

(RPP-Nepal leader Padma Sundar Lawati, Rajdhani, 20 Dec.)

“If a situation arises where threw has to be 18 hours load-shedding a day, the country will collapse. Political speeches will be of no use then. It will also affect the peace process.”

(PM Prachanda, The Kathmandu Post, 20 Dec.)

“Our party leaders are not extending cooperation to the present government. If Prachanda is unsuccessful, Bamdeb can’t ever be a success. It’s not logical at all to even think UML will be safe by sinking a boat led Maoists.”

(UML Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam, Rajdhani, 20 Dec.)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Embassies being established in Canada, South Africa, Kuwait

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: Foreign ministry has started homework to open embassies in Canada, South Africa and Kuwait, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
The ministry has written separate letters to the finance ministry and the ministry of general administration for permission.


“A movie moves towards a climax after intermission; the hero wins. Nepali people are the heroes; they will win.”

(PM Prachanda telling journalists, Rajdhani, 19 Dec.)

“Power emergency will be declared in a day or two. Load-shedding will be increased to 18 hours a day from Falgun [mid-February]; there’s no alternative.”

(PM Prachanda, Rajdhani, 19 Dec.)

Reshuffle in Maoist party

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: Maoist organization department under Mohan Baidya Kiran following a central committee general decision to allocate one post for one person.
A decision was taken Thursday.
Post Bahadur Bogati, CP Gajurel, Barsha Man Pun, Netra Bikram Chand, Dinanath Sherma, Hitman Sakya and Sakti bahadur Basnet, who aren’t ministers, are members of the committee.
Netra Bikram Chand has been appointed chief of eight fraternal organizations like student, women, peasants’ workers, Dalit and intellectuals previously led by Prachanda.
Barsha Man Pun has been entrusted responsibility for professional organizations like officials, professors, lawyers, engineer and doctors.
Nanda Kishore Pun Pasang will head the PLA.

Emergency could be declared: PM Prachanda

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: Prime Minister Prachanda said emergency could be declared because of increased load-shedding, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
“How can the county run under such conditions?” he asked a select group of journalists Thursday warning load-shedding
may be extended to 18 hours a day from Falgun/Chait [February/March 2009].
Prachanda said he’s visiting Denmark, Norway and Finland to study ways of resolving the problem of load-shedding and indicated he may be visiting Lebanon as well.
The prime minister didn’t specifically talk of a energy emergency.

Binod Chaudhary re-elected for third term

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: Binod Chaudhary was re-elected Thursday president of Confederation of
Nepalese Industries (CNI) for a third term.
Ananda Bagaria, Narendra Basneyt, Birendra Shanghai, Anuj Agrawal and Haribhakta Sharma were elected vice-presidents.

Idol lifting gang busted

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: One dozed rare idols were recovered in a raid on a house in Pashupatinagar, Jhapa, and half a dozen suspected idol smugglers with links in Darjeeling, Assam and Sikkim were arrested, police said.
A husband and wife who owned the house were also arrested.


“The revolution is still underway. We’ve realized hat it is very difficult to work in a coalition. We want to move faster for change but the old mentality and pace of other parties in government have hindered our efforts.”

(Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai, The Kathmandu, Post, 19 Dec.)

“Government won’t land in trouble; don’t even conceive of an ambush.”

(Mohan Baidya Kiran, Bimarsha, 19 Dec.)

Second govt. official shot dead in Dhanusha in four days

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: A second government official of hill descent was shot dead by rebel groups overnight in Dhanusha in four days.
Non-commissioned officer Mangal Maharjan, deputed to guard the private residence of President Dr Ram Baran Yadav at Sapaahi was shot dead Thursday night at Mahabir Chowk in the holy city.
Maharjan died on the spot when he was attacked during load-shedding.
Assassins fled the murderous attack.
Rajan Group of Terai People’s Mukti Morcha claimed responsibility saying the group has abandoned talks with government.
Kumar Niraula of the finance ministry was shot dead Monday.
The town has been terrorized by the killings as daily violence continues unabated in the south.
Official talks between government and rebel groups haven’t got underway
In nearly three months to resolve regional demands.
Government reacted to the escalating violence this week by asking organizations and individuals to handover unlicensed arms and ammunition within 15 days or face punitive action.

Nepal still faces threats from foreigners, royalists: Prachanda

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: Prime Minister Prachanda told a select group of reporters Thursday Nepal
still faces threats from foreigners and royalists, according to reports complied from Friday’s broadsheet publications.
“There are attempts to revive monarchy.
“There’s even talk of launching a 100,000-strong military force,” Kantipur reported Prachanda as saying .
Prachanda confirmed during this week’s meeting with the Indian ambassador, Rakesh Sood held discussions recently with former King Gyanendra who discussed the likelihood of an India visit to meet relatives.
“The former king reportedly said his former supporters all have become Maoists,” according to Kantipur.
“Just the other day, Surya Bahadurji talked of a democratic alliance. Has this come from him alone or elsewhere? In Nepal’s politics, political parties here aren’t the only players; there are foreigners as well.
“Its appears superficially Nepal’s political parties are fighting; but inside the entire world is squabbling,” the prime minister said.
“There are players who want a positive outcome and there are those who see Nepal as their fiefdom,” Prachanda reportedly told reporters, according to The Kathmandu Post.
Prachanda warned an attempt to topple the government will have disastrous consequences.
“There no situation for an alternative government by toppling the present regime. A big thing will happen in the country by attempting to topple present government,” Premier Dahal warned.
“The peace process will be derailed; the constitution can’t be drafted.”
Prachanda said: “Sometimes there’s a feeling it was more pleasant during the people’s war,” admitting government hasn’t succeeding in delivering desired results.
Pushpa Kamal Dahal admitted the failure to resolve an internal party dispute between his faction and a group led by Mohan Baidya Kiran would have had disastrous consequences.
The nation could have collapsed if the differences weren’t resolved. It would have been dangerous for a party that emerged from a violent people’s war to be engulfed in a crisis,” he said, according to Kantipur.
“The situation was very difficult. We overcame it.”

CPN (Maoist), CPN-UML discuss formation of integration committee

Kathmandu, 19 Dec: For the second time in two days, CPN (Maoist) and CPN-UML Friday morning discussed formation of the stalled Army Special Integration Committee for a breakthrough.
Integration of Nepal Army and PLA hasn’t begun with the main opposition Nepali Congress
demanding two seats for itself in the committee.
CPN-UML Thursday proposed two seats for each for the four top parties, including the Nepali Congress which has been allotted only one seat.
Only two months remain for the committee to complete its work.
Government has already decided to extend the mandate of UNMIN from 23 January 2009 for another six months to complete integration.

Congress boycotts CA session

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Main opposition Nepali Congress boycotted Thursday’s session of the CA charging Maoists for not implementing a nine-point commitment of Prime Minister Prachanda in the assembly to implement demands including return of seized assets.
Chief Whip Laxman Prasad Ghimere threatened to boycott future sessions until commitment is met.
The Congress assembly members then walked out amid charges Maoists had threatened armed rebellion and threats to impose dictatorial rule..
The walkout reflects the worsening relations between the party leading government and the main opposition.
The development will obstruct the delayed drafting of the constitution.
Meanwhile, Maoist Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai said Maoists will continue in government for another three years to draft the constitution and hold legislative elections.
Dr Bhattarai said this amid threats of Prachanda the CPN (Maoist) will take to the streets if cooperation isn’t forthcoming.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Dhanusha closed down

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Government officials Thursday forced the closure of offices in Dhaunsha where a rebel group Monday shot dead government official Kumar Niraula of hill descent.
Violence is on the rise in the south despite calls in invitation by government to nearly two dozen groups to sit own for talks to resolve regional demands.
Even more than two months after the invitation, serious formal talks haven’t been launched.
Instead, the government Wednesday warned groups and individuals of legal action if illegal arms and ammunition aren’t submitted to government within 15 days.
Many believe Maoists leading the government haven’t handed over all their weapons after joining the peace process in April 2005.
Jwala Singh group of the Terai Mukti Morcha, the most violent terai group, Monday asked government to create an environment within 15 days for talks charging its demands haven’t been met.

Maoist, CPN-UML talks

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Top leaders of the biggest ruling coalition partners, CPN (Maoist) and CPN-UML held discussions amid threats by the latter to withdraw from government.
The coalition is shaky as Maoists and CPN-UML youth activists clash amid deep differences on administering the government.
Discussions will continue into late afternoon.
There’s no immediate likelihood of the CPN-UML withdrawing from government by implementing its threat.
The third coalition partner, MJF, has also threatened to withdraw from government
Amid charges from Maoists the terai-based party is run by India,

No immediate of Mashal, CPN (Maoist) unity

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: The immediate unity between CPN (Maoist) and CPN (Mashal/ Unity Center) has been postponed for at least two weeks citing the need to complete organizational work.
Top leaders came of the two communist parties reached a conclusion Thursday morning postponing the unity already approved by the Maoist central committee meeting.

Krishna Hari Baskota appointed RBB Chairman

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Krishna Hari Bastoka has been appointed chairman of Rashtra Banijya Bank (RBB), Nepal’s largest commercial wholly government owned bank.
Baskota is secretary (revenue) at the finance ministry.

Another Nepali killed in Iraq

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Another Nepali was killed in an explosion in Baghdad Tuesday, Annapurna Post reports from Pokhara.
Durga Bahadur Gurung of Matepani, Pokhara was killed.

Maoist military commission is being revived to push integration; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Maoist military is being activated after nearly 33 months
, Rebati Sapkota reports in Annapurna Post.
The commission was formed to take a political decision of the Maoist PLA.
It’s being activated to take a decision on integration of the PLA.
Maoist central secretariat is meeting Thursday to formulate a policy and structure in the changed context.
Secretariat member Netra Bikram Chand ‘Biplab’ said the meting is being held to implement a central committee decision on army integration soonest.
According to him, the commission will be reorganized to take a firm decision in integration.
PLA combatants should be deployed for development activities, Janmadeb Jaise reports in Rajdhani.
PLA Chief Nanda Kishore Pun Pasang held discussions with PM Prachanda, Finance Minister Dr Baburm Bhattarai and Peace Minister
Janardhan Sharma Prabhakar Wednesday.
“We demanded the deployment of PLA in development work without affecting the peace process,” Pasang told Rajdhani.
The PM was positive to our demands, he said.

Appeal to handover arms, ammunition

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: The home ministry Wednesday asked people and institutions to handover illegal unlicensed arms and ammunition to the nearest district administration office or district police office within 15 days.
Illegal arms and ammunition will be seized and legal action initiated, the ministry warned.
The warning comes as official talks are yet to start to resolve the rebellion in the terai.
There’s credible speculation Maoists may not have surrendered all their weapons after joining the political mainstream in April 2005.
Thousands of combatants with there arms are in UNMIN camps.
Violence continues unabated in the terai.
Suspected Jwala Singh group of Terai Mukti Morcha Tuesday dragged CPN-UML activist Rama Shah out of his tea-stall and shot him dead in Dhanusha.

Ramesh Bikal dead

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Progressive writer Ramesh Bikal died Wednesday while undergoing hospital treatment for asthma and diabetes.
He was 81.
He was member of Nepal Academy.

Nepal, India rail accord

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Nepal and India signed an amended rail accord Wednesday.
The amended accord will facilitate movement of crude and edible oils, petroleum products and other cargo to and from the dry port at Birjung from dry ports of all major Indian cities in tank wagons and iron and steel products on flat wagons reducing transport fare.


“Regardless of what the stars say, restoration of monarchy is still a no-no, since the ex-king hasn’t shown enough contrition to those who matter.”

(Maila Baje, People’s Review, 18 Dec.)

“The land and houses seized in legitimate manner will be allocated to landless peasants in a judicial way. The land and houses seized illegally can be returned.”

(Maoist leader Top Bahadur Rayamajhi, The Himalayan Times, 18 Dec.)

Load-shedding increased to 10 hours every day

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Load-shedding has been increased three hours to 10 hours every day from Thursday.
Power will be cutoff two times a day for six and four hours.
Power cut is likely to be increased as the winter progresses.

Muslims to protest

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Muslims will protest Thursday what they call their non-representation in 14 committees formed this week to draft a constitution.
They will present their protest formally to CA Chairman Subash Nemwang.
The chairmen of the committees who should have been elected by Monday leading to fears the basic law may not be drafted within the stipulated 18-month deadline.
A clear divide has surfaced between communists who dominate the 601-member CA and democrats; the divide will complicate the difficult task of constitution drafting.

NSU to present memorandum to PM

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Nepal Students’ Union, a student wing of main opposition Nepali Congress, is presenting a memorandum to Prime Minster Prachanda Thursday protesting his recent comments on the need for violence and street protests even while leading government.
Main opposition Nepali Congress accuses CPN (Maoist) of totalitarian tendencies with a agenda to impose a dictatorial system.
The main opposition has decided to raise the issue to educate people.
Congress has even adopted a policy of non-cooperation with Maoists.

German assistance

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Germany has pledged a Rs.3.7 billion assistance for Nepal for the next two years.
Top officials of the two counties reviewed German assistance this week in the Nepalese capital.
The money will be spent mainly health, local government, civil society and the peace process.
In the past, German grants were invested in building infra-structure projects,

Load-shedding increased to 10 hours every day

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Load-shedding has been increased three hours to 10 hours every day from Thursday.
Power will be cutoff two times a day for six and four hours.
Power cut is likely to be increased as the winter progresses.

Muslims to protest

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Muslims will protest Thursday what they call their non-representation in 14 committees formed this week to draft a constitution.
They will present their protest formally to CA Chairman Subash Nemwang.
The chairmen of the committees who should have been elected by Monday leading to fears the basic law may not be drafted within the stipulated 18-month deadline.
A clear divide has surfaced between communists who dominate the 601-member CA and democrats; the divide will complicate the difficult task of constitution drafting.

NSU to present memorandum to PM

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Nepal Students’ Union, a student wing of main opposition Nepali Congress, is presenting a memorandum to Prime Minster Prachanda Thursday protesting his recent comments on the need for violence and street protests even while leading government.
Main opposition Nepali Congress accuses CPN (Maoist) of totalitarian tendencies with a agenda to impose a dictatorial system.
The main opposition has decided to raise the issue to educate people.
Congress has even adopted a policy of non-cooperation with Maoists.

German assistance

Kathmandu, 18 Dec: Germany has pledged a Rs.3.7 billion assistance for Nepal for the next two years.
Top officials of the two counties reviewed German assistance this week in the Nepalese capital.
The money will be spent mainly health, local government, civil society and the peace process.
In the past, German grants were invested in building infra-structure projects,


“”We didn’t care [about Indian bothers in Nepal]. We were here to improve relations with Nepal and help it in its initiatives.”

(Former West German diplomat posted to Nepal Dr Heinrich Seeman who because chief of protocol, The Kathmandu Post, 15 Dec.)

“Another aspect is about keeping the country together. Earlier, you had monarchy as a unifying force. With the monarchy gone, you could use the Nepali language as the unifying factor as was done by Sukarno in Indonesia. Nobody wants to see Nepal breaking apart.”

(Dr Seeman, The Kathmandu Post, 15 Dec.)

“Despite the understanding on the important political appointments between the two largest coalition partiers—UML and CPN-Maoist, the intra-party squabbles with the UML have led the Maoist-headed government to an uneasy situation. The Maoist recent statement suggests the intra-party differences for leadership, inability to lead the coalition partners, proximity to with China and India’s resentment are other factors forcing CPN-Maoist to remain out of power.”

(newsreport, 15Dec.)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Former king, Indian ambassador meet

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: Former King Gyanendra and Indian Ambassador Rakesh Sood 9 December for two hours from 6.30 in the evening at Soaltee Hotel, Sanghu reports.
The meeting has created stirs in high political circles and the Prachanda government.
The meeting, political circles say, isn’t normal.

PM Prachanda visiting three EU member states

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda is visiting EU member states Finland, Norway and Belgium to promote their investments in the power sector in the end of January 2009, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
He has ordered the foreign ministry to workout details of the visit even as the embattled government faces opposition from within the government and the opposition.
The PM has already visited China, India and New York to address a UN general assembly session.
[The three counties openly support Maoists in government; the left Belgium government suspended military to the government which then was fighting Maoists before 2004.]

Inflation skyrockets to 14.5 percent

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: Inflation skyrocketed to 14.5 percent in the first four months of the current fiscal year 2008/09, Nepal Rashtra Bank said.
Sugar price recorded a 37 percent increase compared to the same period previous year.
Prices of rice, lentils, ghee, oil have also shot up.
Price of rice increased 22 percent.
Prices increased despite government efforts to limit inflation to single digit.
The central bank announcement is bad news for Maoist-led government which has made promises to the people.

14 committees related to drafting being constitution being announced Monday

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: Members of 14 committees related to drafting the constitution are being announced by CA Chairman Subash Nemwang Monday.
The election of the chairmen of committees can’t be met within the announced Monday deadline.
Major parties are trying to grab the chairmanship of the constitution drafting committee.
The election of the committee chairmen should have been completed by Monday.
There’s no agreement between 25 parties in the CA to share responsibility on the leadership of the committees.
A constitution has to be drafted within the next 18 months as differences between major political parties have surfaced increasing doubts the constitution won’t be drafted within the deadline.

Strike hits Pokhara

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: A sudden strike called by the Nepali Congress, Kaski, closed down the tourist resort of Pokhara Monday as student activists of the main opposition clashed with police.
Life came to a standstill.
The main opposition, in a statement, charged Maoist and CPN-UML activists for an arson attack on an educational institution one day earlier.

Two houses bombed in Bara

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: One businessman of Madeshi descent was injured in a bombing attack by a rebel group at Jitpur in Bara overnight.
The house of Jitendra Malla was also damaged in a separate bombing attack as violence continues in the south.

Maoist central committee meet begins

Kathmandu, 15 Dec: A Maoist central committee meeting resumed Monday after three days.
The meeting will discuss a political report represented by Prime Minister Prachanda who is also the chairman of the CPN (Maoist).
The report amalgamates suggestions of the prime minister and his main critic Mohan Baidya Kiran for the party’s future strategy.
The two leaders differed on a federal democratic republic to consolidate gains of a republic and Kiran’s demand for a revolution to establish a people’s republic.
The meeting will also discuss organizational change.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Mid-Marshyangdhi to be commissioned Sunday

Kathmandu, 14 Dec: The 70MW Mid-Marshyangdhi, German assisted Nepal’s biggest hydro power plant, is being commissioned Sunday by Prime Minister Prachanda to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Nepal and Germany.
But the commissioning of the plant won’t ease the seven-hour load-shedding in the midst of winter.
The project is being commissioned four years behind schedule.

CPN (Maoist), Unity Center unification to go ahead

Kathmandu, 14 Dec: A delayed CPN (Maoist), CPN (Unity Center/ Mashal) unity has been cleared by a central committee meeting of the Maoists.
The unity meeting was endorsed Wednesday.
The central committee meets again Monday.


“A person who has assumed the mantle of a premier according to the people’s mandate must not make such a remark [to quit government if Maoist-led government doesn’t receive cooperation].”

(Communist leader Narayanman Bijukakchaya, The Kathmandu Post, 14 Dec.)

Friday, December 12, 2008

China won’t keep quiet if Nepal’s territorial integrity threatened

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: China won’t keep quiet if Nepal, located on the southern lap of the Himalaya and Tibet is threatened, according to China’s new Ambassador Qui Guohong.
The new Chinese ambassador said stability in Nepal is important for southern China and Tibet.
“China is consistent in its non-interference policy. We are always ready to support Nepal’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We fully respect Nepal’s sovereignty.
“However, we will not remain quiet if Nepal is subjected to a threat to its territorial integrity and sovereignty from any quarter.
“Stable neighbour is very important to southern China and Tibetan Autonomous Region.
“If Nepal faces problems in future, China will support the effort of the Nepalese government and people’s efforts to safeguard its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Ambassador Qui told reporters Friday immediately after the visit if a Chinese military delegation headed by the Deputy Chief of the PLA Lt Gen Ma Xiaotian...
Border security and Tibet figure in discussions during the visit.
Continuing its South Asia visit, the delegation proceeded to India from Nepal.
China’s strong comes at a time when the exiled Tibetan community in India where the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama lives in self-exile recently discussed launching an independence movement.
In the 1960’s and early 1970’s Tibetan Khampa guerrillas launched a pro-independence movement from Mustang,
Ambassador Qui called for ‘good and stable environment’ for Chinese investment in Nepal.

Discordant tunes in CPU-UML

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: Two top CPN-UML leaders are talking discordant notes confusing the people on whether the party will continue in a Maoist-led government or opt out of it.
“Maoists could not perform well with their expertise to lead the government and no one is expecting the Nepali Congress. Now it’s our responsibility to lead the government on the right path,” General Secretary Jhalanath Khanal said Friday in the capital, according to The Rising Nepal.
He asked the central leadership to gear up for shouldering any responsibilities that might come their way, the newspaper reports.
But Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam, said Friday the CPN-UML will quit government with Maoists if the government’s leader is booted out.
Gautam, known for his proximity with CPN(Maoist) said,” In the present context, it will be next to impossible to form a government without the former rebels. Even if such an administration is formed, it will not last long,” Gautam said urging his party to opt out of government if it is toppled..
Nepali Congress is trying to assemble what it calls a ‘democratic front’ against Maoists as leading politicians openly say the constitution drafting process will receive a setback with government change.
Maoists have vowed to take to the streets if they are ousted.
The traditional divide between the Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist) has re-surfaced after Nepali Congress and Girija Prasad Koirala were toppled in CA elections and government.
Congress and CPN (Maoist) trade charged blaming each other for abandoning a ‘politics of consensus’.


“The task of constitution making can gain momentum only when CPN (Maoist), Nepali Congress and CPN-UML move ahead cohesively.”

(Former CPN-UML General Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal, The Himalayan Times, 13 Dec.)

CPN (Maoist) central committee meet postponed

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: A CPN (Maoist) central committee scheduled for Saturday has been postponed for two days because of the busy schedule Prime Minister Prachanda who is also party chairman.
The meeting that will now be held Monday will discuss a party general convention and allocation of organizational responsibilities.

Schools to close Sunday

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: Boarding schools will close nation-wide Sunday to remember 23 students and teachers killed in a bus accident in Mukundapur, Nawalparasi Thursday night.
At least 60 passengers were injured in one of the worst vehicular accidents in recent times.
The bus as returning to Chitwan from Lumbini where the school group has gone on a picnic.
Eighteen students and four teachers of Hill Bird Boarding School in Chitwan died; three members of one family were killed.

UNMIN mandate to be extended for another six months

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: The mandate of UNMIN will be extended again for another six months, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
UNMIN Chief Ian Martin held discussions with Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda and leaders of the main opposition Nepali Congress Friday.
The mandate expires 23 January 2009.
Government is expected to formally notify UN by 24 December 2008.
The mandate has been ext4ended twice already.

20MW electricity to be imported from India

Kathmandu, 13 Dec; Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) will import 20MW electricity from the Indian state of West Bengal from 1 January 2009 at Rs 7.20 per unit, Nepal Samacharpatra reports.
The power is being bought from Power Trading Corporation India Ltd in the peak winter season amid shortage.

PM Prachanda espouses rebellion

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 13 Dec: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda Friday espoused rebellion and rebellion to protect political gains and peace
.”If people aren’t educated on rebellion, change will be lost,” he warned
Prachanda warned people may have to take up violent rebellion to save the nation.
“Attempt to snatch away people’s rights will be met with violence. This peace has come from the barrel of a gun. To defend the peace, the gun should continue to be in the hands of the people.
‘There’s a strong possibility the gun may fall in the hands of the people,” he told a public meeting in the capital.
Prachanbda’s warning comes amid threats to take to the streets in the next two months
If other parties don’t cooperate with the Maoist-led government.
Dahal said his government hasn’t been able to deliver because of non-cooperation of political parties and some unnamed foreign powers.
“There are opportunities and challenges whether a people’s constitution or a document of feudal capitalists will be drafted,” he said.
Main opposition Nepali Congress, ruling party coalition members CPN-UML, Madesh Janaadhikar Forum (MJF) and Nepal Sadbhavana Party haven’t submitted names of committee members to write a constitution within the deadline.
The constituent assembly secretariat has asked 25 political parties to submit names of 14 committee members
by Tuesday; election of committee chairmen were to be conducted 15 December.
Former Speaker Damannath Dhungana says he’s now doubtful the constitution will be drafted within the 27 May 2010 deadline.
He said political parties, including Nepali Congress, were involved in toppling government.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

23 killed in bus plunge

Kathmandu, 12 Dec: Twenty-three students and teachers were killed and 32 were seriously injured in Nawalparasi when a school bus plunged off the Mahendra Highway Thursday.
Sixty students and teachers were injured.
The bus was ferrying the school group from Butwal where the school team had gone on a picnic.
The bus plunged 25 feet off the highway.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

PM Prachanda threatens to go to people

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Prime Minister Prachanda threatened to go to the people Sunday if the government can’t give people a sense of change in the next two months.
He admitted government failed to give people such feeling in the last three months also because of ‘traditional attitude and culture’.
“If the peace process fails and without integration, there will be a big crisis,” he additionally warned.
Prachanda asked Nepal iCongress to abandon its ‘arrogance’.

Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam also issues warning

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bamdeb Gautam also issued a warning to terai rebels whom he called ‘criminals’ government will deal sternly with those who don’t come for negotiations to resolve regional demands.
He called groups who haven’t responded to government invitation for talks criminals.
He issued the warning from Lahan, Siraha.
He warned security agencies will be active against rebels who don’t respond to government call for negotiations.
Gautam was reviewing the situation in central terai districts with officials in Lahan.

CPN-UML asks Maoists to from integration committee soonest

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: CPN (Maoist) and CPN-UML in a high-level meeting Sunday agreed not to delay the formation of a special committee for the integration of Maoist and state armies.
“The prime minister has agreed and the delay will be ended soonest,” CPN-UML General Secretary Jhalanath Khanal said when the issue of the integration was discussed.
The biggest parties in the coalition also agreed in principle clashes between their youth groups should end.
“Relations between two parties should be improved to the coalition partners are to move ahead,” Khanal said.
The two parties discussed how to make a recently forme4d 12-member coordination committee of six ruling parties effective.
Former CPN-UML General Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal refused to chair the committee to which he was appointed without consultation.

Koirala examined for more than three hours

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Girija Prasad Koirala was examined by a team of doctors for three-and-a-half hours.
Koirala told reporters in Dhangadi before emplaning for the capital Maoists are selling dreams.
He warned for the second time in two days Maoists may have to return to the jungle.
Congress, he warned, will unilaterally draft a constitution, if Maoists sideline its drafting.

MJF central committee begin meet

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Ruling Madesh Janaadhikar Forum (MJF) central committee started ‘serious discussions’ in Birgunj Sunday.
The committee is discussing likely postponement of a general convention originally scheduled for 13 December.
MJF meet started amid party’s threat to withdraw from government if terai demands aren’t met.

41 injured in Dandeldhura student, police clash

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Forty-one students and police were injure in clashes in Dandeldhura Sunday, a radio report said.
Six students and three policemen are seriously injured.
Students attacked district headquarters.

CA informs parties of delay in constitution drafting

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: The CA formally notified 25 parties Sunday of delay in implementing a 72-week business schedule to draft a constitution.
The secretariat has told parties no work has been done to meet the schedule.
Parties have been asked to nominate 10 chairmen of subject committees by Tuesday.
The secretariat also told government there was shortage of officials to conduct business of the committees drafting the constitution.

Load-shedding for next five years

Kathmandu, 7 Dec: Load-shedding will continue for another five years, Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) said Sunday.
Only 46MG electricity was being generated in the mid-winter season when power demand in highest, the agency said.

Three Bir Hospital doctors resign

Kathmandu,7 Dec: Three senior doctors of Bir Hospital resigned Sunday, including Dr Bishwa Raj Dali, Vice-Chancellor of National Academy of Medical Sciences.
The hospital remained closed for three weeks as a group of resident doctors were unhappy with Dr Dali’s leadership.
The three doctors resigned to create an environment for smooth running of the hospital, they said.