The Cabinet expansion expected to happen today is perhaps the most significant issue covered by major English and Nepali dailies published from Kathmandu today. Almost all newspapers have covered the issue in the front page.
Other issues are varied. The unification between Bibeksheel Nepali Party and Sajha Party, which is being announced today, has also been carried in the front page by many papers. Likewise, the final rites of mountaineer and athlete Sanjay Pandit and publication of results of Employment Permit System-Test of Proficiency in Korean (EPS-TOPIK) have also received significant attention.
Cabinet expansion today
Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba is almost certain to expand his Cabinet today. Though PM Deuba had planned to induct new ministers into the coalition government on Tuesday, he was forced to postpone the plan owing to differences about ministerial portfolios and names of some ministers within his Nepali Congress party, says a report in Republica.
According to The Kathmandu Post lead story, as many as 19 new ministers will join the government today—10 from Congress, six from CPN-Maoist Centre, two from Nepal Democratic Forum and one from CPN-United. Annapurna Post among other papers has published names of likely ministers.
Power tariff may go up by 20 per cent for industries
A front page story in Karobar says the Nepal Electricity Authority has proposed to increase the electricity fee by 20 per cent. The increment, however, will not affect domestic consumers as the new rate will be applied to industries only.
The Electricity Tariff Determination Commission is currently discussing the proposal and the final decision is yet to be taken.
The NEA was planning to new rate from the beginning of this fiscal year (mid-July), but the two phases of local level elections had delayed the procedure.
The state-owned power monopoly had increased the electricity tariff for all customers exactly one year ago. The Commission is now proposing to automatically increase the rate by five per cent every year.
Judicial body at local level function-less for want of law
The constitution has given local governments an authority to exercise executive, legislative and judiciary rights. However, the newly formed governments have not been able to exercise the judicial rights fully for the want of related laws, says the anchor story in Rajdhani.
According to Article 217 of the constitution, each local body has a three-member Judicial Committee headed by vice-chairperson or deputy mayor to look after various disputes at the local level. Accordingly, almost all local units of six provinces that went to polls in May and June have already formed such committees, but are unable to carry out any function as there is no specific law to guide them.
Deputy mayors of Kathmandu and Lalitpur metropolitan cities, Hariprabha Khadgi and Geeta Satyal, have been quoted in the report as saying that they have been waiting for laws to run the local legal bodies.
Rainfall in this monsoon ‘very less than normal’
According to the anchor story in Nagarik, the monsoon this year witnessed very less rainfall than the average.
Generally, the most raining month in Nepal is July, but in the first 25 days of July this year, the rainfall recorded at 14 centres of the Meteorological Forecasting Division is very less. Comparatively, the eastern region of Nepal recorded less rainfall than the western region. The trend was against the prediction of meteorologists including those of the South Asian Climate Outlook Forum.
“We still have five more days in July,” meteorologist Subas Rimal says, “But, the level of rainfall hardly meets the normal scale even if it rains for five days continuously.”
Immigration department to open visa centres in all provinces within next 14 months
The Department of Immigration in Nepal is planning to open visa centres in each of seven provinces of the country by October 2018 so as to allow foreigners receive and renew Nepal visa from any place appropriate to them, says the anchor story in Karobar daily today.
Currently, Nepal visa is being issued from 89 offices including the Department, its 11 offices at various places and Nepali diplomatic missions abroad.
The Department says it will select places to open visa centres on the basis of number of service recipients among other factors. It will cost more than Rs 3 billion to the state.
Meanwhile, chief of the Department, Ganga Ram Gelal says the Department is improving the online service to facilitate the visa acquisition process.
Published on July 26th, Wednesday, 2017 9:56 AM