Reminiscing last week: Political announcements and arrests « Khabarhub
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Reminiscing last week: Political announcements and arrests


24 June 2024  

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KATHMANDU: Last week saw a series of significant developments across Nepal, ranging from political announcements to law enforcement actions and diplomatic appointments. Here’s a summary of key events that unfolded during the past week:

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal signaled the potential allowance for foreign companies to operate all three of Nepal’s international airports.

During a House of Representatives (HoR) meeting, PM Dahal responded to inquiries about Pokhara International Airport, indicating ongoing discussions about international collaboration for Nepal’s airport operations.

“I discussed with the concerned ministry about international collaboration for the operation of Pokhara and Gautam Buddha International Airports. I received positive and encouraging updates on this matter,” PM Dahal stated.

Currently, Nepal hosts three international airports: Tribhuvan International Airport, Pokhara International Airport, and Gautam Buddha International Airport.

Last week, the Nepal Petroleum Tanker Drivers’ Union decided to call off its strike following an agreement reached with the Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) after discussions at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, and Supplies on Monday.

Meanwhile, PM Dahal also assured parliamentarians of a concerted effort to enhance the appointment process of ambassadors, emphasizing transparency, dignity, and performance-based criteria.

Addressing queries during a House of Representatives session, PM Dahal affirmed that ambassadorial appointments would strictly adhere to Nepal’s constitutional principles and foreign policy objectives.

“Our government remains steadfast in deploying diplomatic missions and their heads abroad to serve the nation’s best interests,” PM Dahal emphasized, underscoring the government’s commitment to evaluating ambassadors objectively and managing their roles to strengthen the nation’s diplomatic endeavors.

In yet another development, Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) Chairman Rajendra Lingden tore up a budget booklet on the rostrum of the House of Representatives last Tuesday in protest against the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure’s budget.

Lingden, who had consistently opposed the budget since its introduction, expressed frustration during the budget discussion by tearing up the booklet.

“Usually, I consider myself a person who expresses less anger and gets less angry. Anger sometimes flares up but subsides after a while. However, since I got my hands on the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure’s budget booklet, I’ve been so enraged that I wanted to tear it apart,” Lingden stated.

The RPP chair accused the government of allocating the budget arbitrarily without any sense of shame or responsibility, criticizing the lack of specificity regarding districts in the plans.

Meanwhile, President Ram Chandra Paudel returned home last week after completing his official visits to Switzerland and Germany.

The President and his delegation departed on June 11 for Switzerland to participate in the 112th session of the International Labor Conference.

In another development, police arrested four individuals, including Tej Bikram Thapa, Chairman of Agriculture Development Multipurpose Cooperative, on charges of embezzling Rs 942.3 million from the cooperative based in Kumaripati, Lalitpur.

The Valley Crime Investigation Office apprehended the suspects, who were made public recently. A total of 566 depositors had filed complaints against these individuals.

This cooperative was also included in the investigation under the Terms of Reference (ToR) of the parliamentary investigation committee formed to probe the cooperative fraud case.

Similarly, Krishna Man Pradhan was nominated for the position of Election Commissioner by the Constitutional Council during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ at the Prime Minister’s official residence in Baluwatar on Sunday evening.

The meeting was attended by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Chief Justice, the leader of the main opposition party, the Chairman of the National Assembly, and the Deputy Speaker.

Additionally, Supreme Court (SC) Justice Prakash Man Singh Raut was appointed as a member of the Judicial Council following the mandatory retirement of Supreme Court Justice Dr. Ananda Mohan Bhattarai on June 15 due to age limits.

Chief Justice Bishwambhar Prasad Shrestha, who chairs the Judicial Council, appointed Raut to the position.

Raut, who was appointed as a Supreme Court Justice in July 2016, is expected to become the next Chief Justice after Chief Justice Shrestha’s retirement on October 5 due to age limits.

In another development, the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) arrested a Chinese national in Kathmandu’s Kapan with approximately 6 kilograms of gold and NPR 4.8 million in cash.

The seven-member committee, led by CPN-UML leader Surya Bahadur Thapa, includes representatives from the Nepali Congress (NC), CPN-UML, CPN-Maoist Center, Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP), and Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP).

Sources indicate that the detained Chinese was previously wanted by the police for involvement in gold smuggling. In parallel operations, two individuals were arrested in New Delhi, India, on suspicion of their involvement in gold smuggling.

Authorities are coordinating to repatriate them to Nepal for further legal proceedings. The CIB has made significant strides in its investigation, recovering a total of 60 kilograms of gold and electronic cigarettes through various routes.

Last week, the Nepal Petroleum Tanker Drivers’ Union decided to call off its strike following an agreement reached with the Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) after discussions at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, and Supplies on Monday.

Commerce and Supplies Secretary Dinesh Kumar Ghimire coordinated the talks, which concluded with the formation of a committee tasked with studying the issues and submitting a report within 15 days.

Chandika Bhatta, the Executive Director of NOC, stated that NOC would resolve the problems based on the committee’s report.

Meanwhile, the parliamentary probe committee formed to investigate the cooperative fraud case began its investigation on Tuesday last week.

The seven-member committee, led by CPN-UML leader Surya Bahadur Thapa, includes representatives from the Nepali Congress (NC), CPN-UML, CPN-Maoist Center, Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP), and Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP).

Publish Date : 24 June 2024 08:45 AM

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