Nepal – the country of the Buddha and the Mt. Everest

Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without – Buddha

Posts Tagged ‘Jhalanath Khanal’

China to provide 200m yuan to support peace process; Wen leaves for Qatar

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 14, 2012

KATHMANDU, Jan 14: Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai and his visiting Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao signed an eight-point bilateral agreement during the talks held at the PM´s office in Singha Durbar on Saturday.

During the luncheon held after the talks, Wen announced that China would provide 200 million yuan in assistance to Nepal in the current fiscal year with intent to support Nepal´s peace process, our correspondent Kiran Chapagainreported.

On the occasion, Wen also pledged to provide 750 million yuan in concessional loan to Nepal in the next three years. The talks chiefly dwelt on economic issues of bilateral cooperation and other issues related to cultural exchange and infrastructural development.

Wen has left Kathmandu for Qatar after completing his four-and a-half hours trip to Nepal. PM Bhattarai and other high government officials saw him off at the Tribhuvan International Airport.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Narayankaji Shrestha is addressing a press meet on Wen´s Nepal visit at the VIP lounge at the TIA.

Earlier in the day, Wen had arrived in Kathmandu, almost an hour behind schedule, in a special aircraft  at 11:50 am. PM Bhattarai, Speaker Subash Nembang and other high government officials received Wen at the VVIP lounge at the airport. Nineteen gunshots were fired in honor of the Chinese premier.

Before wrapping up his visit, Wen called on President Dr Ram Baran Yadav at the latter´s official residence in Maharajgunj. Prior to this, he attended the official luncheon hosted by PM Bhattarai in Singha Durbar. UCPN (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Nepali Congress President Sushil Koirala, CPN UML Chairman Jhalanath Khanal and a very few government ministers also attended the function.

Wen’s visit is the first by a Chinese premier since the then premier Zhu Rongji’s Nepal trip in May 2001. Before that, Chinese President Jiang Zemin had paid a visit to Nepal back in 1996. Read the rest of this entry »

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Jhalanath Khanal elected PM of Nepal

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 5, 2011

Plagued by a “sleepless night” and fears that “lawmakers would not be able to venture out on the streets due to people throwing shoes at them”, Nepal’s Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda decided to make a “sacrifice” and bow out of the 17th round of prime ministerial election Thursday.

However, it was more a defeat for India than the two losing politicians. Indian foreign secretary Nirupama Rao’s recent visit to Nepal had not envisioned the possibility of such an opportunistic poll alliance between the Maoists and the communists and as Prachanda indicated in his exit speech, it was an act of defiance against “Indian interference”.

KATHMANDU: Plagued by a “sleepless night” and fears that “lawmakers would not be able to venture out on the streets due to people throwing shoes at them”, Nepal’s Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda decided to make a “sacrifice” and bow out of the 17th round of prime ministerial election Thursday. The surprise exit paved the way for the Maoists’ last-minute poll ally, the ruling communists, to sail to a facile victory with their chairman Jhalanath Khanal pipping his remaining two contenders, Ram Chandra Poudel of the Nepali Congress, and this election’s surprise contender, Bijay Kumar Gachhedar, who was backed by an alliance of regional parties from the Terai plains of southern Nepal.

The election, that started almost three hours behind schedule and continued for nearly five more hours, protracted by long speeches by the contestants, recriminations and counter-recriminations, saw the 61-year-old Khanal, a former information and communications minister, poll 368 votes, more than the simple majority needed. Poudel, who had fought 16 earlier rounds of fruitless elections for the last seven months, polled 122 votes while Gacchedar, the sitting deputy prime minister, got 67 votes.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Nepal: The President’s Call

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 4, 2011

By Yubaraj Ghimire
Nepal’s three major political parties — the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoists, the Nepali Congress and the Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist — never get tired of advocating the politics of consensus, but they have failed to come even to a minimum understanding of electing a prime minister in the past seven months. Grilled, booed and jeered by the people, the three parties finally took recourse to amending the law on the election of the PM by the parliament. Those who get the lowest votes will be eliminated and “neutral voting or abstaining” will be prohibited. When only two candidates are left, the winner will be decided by a simple majority. If all goes according to schedule, the country will have a new PM by February 3.
But people who feel let down by the current set of leaders are sceptical of the effectiveness of such a PM, given the fact that he would be more a product of the compelling law than of an agreed agenda and political understanding.
Over the past two weeks, after President Ram Baran Yadav had renewed the election process — first by giving 10 days to the House to explore a consensual approach and then, on its expiry, asking them to go by a simple majority process — political parties failed even to decide on their candidates. Madhav Nepal continues to remain the caretaker PM for a record eight months.
In the midst of all this, Yadav left for India — Kolkata, Chandigarh and Delhi — on a 10-day visit beginning January 27. The visit was on an invitation of the Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata, and the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, from where he got his MBBS and postgraduate degrees respectively. The visit was meant to be a private one. But the government of India volunteered to make it “official”. This gives enough hint that India, concerned about the lack of progress in the constitution-making process in Nepal and the absence of a full-fledged government all these months, will begin a serious “review Nepal situation”. This is a time when the president is under pressure from some political quarters at home to assume executive role, since a caretaker PM cannot be allowed to continue indefinitely. India seems to be weighing that option and its likely implication for the peace process. Read the rest of this entry »

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Jhalanath Khanal elected PM

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 3, 2011

KATHMANDU, Feb 4: Ending seven months of impasse, the parliament on Thursday elected Jhalanath Khanal as the prime minister after UCPN Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, in a surprising move, withdrew his candidacy and his party voted for Khanal.

The 34th prime minister of Nepal, Khanal secured 368 votes against 122 of his nearest rival Ram Chandra Paudel. Another candidate Bijaya Gachchhadar bagged 67 votes. Khanal, 61, is the third leader from the CPN-UML to reach to the top executive post of the country. Late Manmohan Adhikari was the first prime minister from the party while outgoing Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal was the second.

Earlier, the parliament had failed to elect a new prime minister despite 16 rounds of votes since the Madhav Kumar Nepal-led government stepped down on June 30 last year.

As he saw no possibility of him being elected, Dahal withdrew his candidacy following a decision of the Maoist standing committee held just ahead of the election.

“I sensed I am not going to win this election,” said Dahal while announcing his withdrawal, adding that he took the decision to sacrifice to the nation.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Khanal blames NC for deadlock

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 9, 2010

MYREPUBLICA

RSS KATHMANDU, Oct 9:  CPN-UML Chairman Jhala Nath Khanal said his party did not vote for the Nepali Congress (NC) in the prime ministerial election as Congress did not convince parties on timely promulgation of a new constitution and peace process completion.

“Prime ministerial candidate of Congress Ram Chandra Poudel does not have any action plan. So why to vote for him?” asked Khanal.

Speaking at a programme organised by UML Kathmandu Constituency No. 7, he said that a new government should be formed forging national consensus and his party has been trying to create consensus among parties.

He blamed Poudel for making the country “a prisoner of indecision” by refusing to withdraw his candidacy.

He hailed Maoist Chairman Puspa Kamal Dahal’s decision to withdraw his candidacy and said that Congress, too, should withdraw its candidacy to pave the way for a national consensus government. Read the rest of this entry »

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