Major Nepali and English broadsheet dailies published from Kathmandu on Wednesday have given the priority to a host of issues. Medical education reform activist Dr Govinda KC’s fast-unto-death continues to be one of the most discussed topics on the front pages of newspapers today. As the current fiscal year is coming to its end next week, many government agencies are in rush to spend the budget allocated them for the year, and it has also been discussed in most of the newspapers. Other political issues including activities of Parliament, the ruling Nepal Communist Party and the main opposition Nepali Congress have also been discussed on the cover pages of Kathmandu newspapers today.
Few other economic and sociocultural issues have also been featured on the front pages of the newspapers today.
Doctors launch strike in support of Dr KC
Newspaper reports inform that Nepal Medical Association, the umbrella organisation of Nepali medical doctors, is beginning a phase-wise strike to express its solidarity with Dr KC, who has been staging an indefinite hunger strike in Jumla of Karnali.
As per the announced protest programmes, the doctors will shut down their services except the emergency ones for one hour today, according to Nagarik. They will also launch rallies and other demonstrations. Annapurna Post says these two programmes will be held daily till the next announcement.
The organisation has warned of completely shutting down all services if the fasting doctors’ demands are not met.
Meanwhile, the fasting doctor has called on the central government to come to Jumla for the talks, according to Kantipur. He is of the view that the talks, however, are not necessary as he just wants the fulfillment of his demands.
On the other hand, Minister for Education Giriraj Mani Pokharel has urged the doctor to end the strike and support the government in reforming medical education sector, Gorkhapatra reports in its anchor story.
Haphazard budget spending at the end of fiscal year continues
Rajdhani, Karobar, Nepal Samacharpatra and Republica have expressed their concerns over the practice of spending allocated budget haphazardly before the end of fiscal year. Karobar reports in a three-column story that the daily spending rate of development budget was Rs 486 million in the first 11 months of the year. However, in the last month, it has rises up to Rs 2.56 billion.
Rajdhani lead story claims that the final day of current fiscal year is just six days away, but the government just spent 76 per cent of the annual budget. Meanwhile, the government is less likely to meet the revenue target this year, according to the report.
Nepal Samacharpatra and Rajdhani have reported that some Supreme Court officials have embarked on a trip to Georgia just to spend the allocated budget.
Dharahara reconstruction in limbo
The National Reconstruction Authority has not been able to move ahead with the reconstruction of historic Dharahara tower as contractors tried to influence the bidding process, reports Nagarik in a two-column front page story.
The Authority was planning to finalise the process on Tuesday, but the process now has been delayed for seven days, according to the report. An official of the Authority has told the paper that the Prime Minister’s Office directed the Authority to delay the bidding.
Misuse of emergency contraception pills on the rise
The Himalayan Times reports that the misuse of emergency contraception pills among the youth of Kathmandu is on the rise as they are indulged in unprotected sex.
The newspaper says it conducted a snap survey at 15 pharmaceutical shops in Kathmandu, and found that the demand for such pills had jumped over 10-fold in the last two years. “Each of the dispensaries THT visited was selling an average of 100 to 600 EPCs a month. They said 70 per cent of their customers were youngsters.”
Nepali Congress forming provincial committees
The main opposition Nepali Congress has begun restructuring the party organisation in line with the country’s federal structure, and it is preparing to form ad hoc provincial committees soon, according to Rajdhani.
The party’s President Sher Bahadur Deuba has convinced senior leader Ram Chandra Paudel to form seven provincial committees, by sharing the leadership positions among different factions of the party. Party leaders Krishna Prasad Sitaula and Prakash Man Singh, who also hold a strong influence on the party organisation, however, are not ready to do so, the report informs.
NAC to purchase 10 aircraft in one year
The country’s national flag carrier Nepal Airlines Corporation is preparing to purchase 10 new aircraft in the next fiscal year, according to Abhiyan. Eight of the aircraft will be deployed for domestic flights whereas two for international flights as its stock in the domestic market is just three per cent currently, the report informs.
NRB to issue monetary policy today
Nepal’s central bank is all set to make public the annual monetary policy for the next fiscal year that begins next month, reports The Himalayan Times in its lead story.
The central regulatory and monetary authority will introduce a provision whereby domestic banks will be able to hedge against convertible foreign currency by borrowing from foreign banks in the new policy, the report informs adding, “The central bank has opened borrowing facility from foreign banks to meet the credit requirement in the production and infrastructure sectors.”
However, Nepali banks are reluctant to make use of the facility owing to the exchange rate risk due to lack of forward contract, according to the report.
Published on July 11th, Wednesday, 2018 9:59 AM