From the Kathmandu Press: Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Most newspapers published in Kathmandu on Tuesday have highlighted reports related to the deteriorating health of Dr Govinda KC. Other political, social and economic issues have also received attention on the front pages. Here’s a summary of important, ignored and interesting reports that made it to the front pages on Tuesday.



Dr KC admitted to hospital, needs better care

Kantipur, The Kathmandu Post, Republica, and Nagarik report that the health of Dr Govinda KC who is staging his 16th hunger strike is getting worse.

The doctors attending KC in Ilam have said that he should be taken to a better hospital because of his critical health condition. He was admitted to the District Hospital on Monday after he contracted pneumonia. Dr Bijendra Krishna Shah, medical superintendent at the hospital said that KC should be kept in the ICU as he is also suffering from low blood pressure and arrhythmia. Other doctors who have treated KC in the past have warned that KC might have a sudden cardiac arrest.

Investment Bank in talks to recover money withdrawn by Sumargi

Nagarik and The Kathmandu Post report that Nepal Investment Bank responding to written instructions by the central bank has said it has started consultations with its legal advisors to bring back the money withdrawn by controversial businessman Ajeya Raj Sumargi on the basis on an interlocutory interim order used by the Supreme Court on December 25.

The central bank, NRB, had written to NIBL on Sunday asking it to get back $6.99 million from Muktishree Cement Factory owned by Sumargi after the apex court on January 8 quashed its earlier order and told NRB and NIBL to maintain the balance is it was before the interim order.

However, Nagarik reports that the central bank is mum on whether it will freeze Sumargi’s other bank accounts if the businessman doesn’t return the amount.

CDO will deploy federal, provincial police

Kantipur, The Himalayan Times and Republica report that the government has drafted a new bill to govern the process of operation, supervision and coordination of Nepal Police and provincial police, proposing that the federal government will deploy provincial police chiefs in all the provinces. The bill registered in the House of Representative also stipulates that Nepal Police will grant approval to provincial police to procure arms and ammunition. The bill suggests that provincial police will have the authority to make arrests, investigate suspects and prosecute the suspects in certain cases as per the Civil Criminal Procedure Act.


National Reconstruction Authority office

NRA won’t complete task in its five-year tenure

The Himalayan Times reports that the National Reconstruction Authority is unlikely to complete its task of reconstruction within its stipulated five-year tenure. Some of NRA’s major reconstruction tasks including Dharahara, Ranipokhari and other monuments will not be completed within their five-year tenure. NRA Chairperson and PM KP Oli on Monday told a meeting of the NRA advisory council in Baluwatar that some of the major tasks would be completed in time as three years of its tenure have already gone. However, PM Oli said that he hopes the new Dharahara would be constructed within his tenure.

Trades in Upper Tamakoshi shares cancelled after surge

Karobar and The Kathmandu Post report that NEPSE on Monday cancelled trades in Upper Tamakoshi shares after prices rose more than 50 per cent exceeding limits set by the bourse.

As per NEPSE rules, a circuit break is applied and trading is halted for the rest of the day if the price of a company’s share increases or decreases by 10 per cent. Upper Tamakoshi shares were valued at Rs 224 each when trading opened on Monday. Investors rushed to purchase the company’s share by posting purchase orders for 243,000 units. As a result, the price surged to Rs 336 per unit. NEPSE spokesperson said that the bourse annulled the transactions of 259 units of the company’s share after the abnormal rise in prices. According to the spokesperson, a technical flaw at NEPSE is the main reason behind the price surge.


Italian firm wants the government to meet their demand if works are to resume on Melamchi project

The Kathmandu Post reports that CMC officials say that they are willing to return to Nepal to continue the work on Melamchi project only if the government meets their demands. The first condition according to the unnamed official is an assurance from the government that passports from the contractor’s team members would not be seized and that they won’t be blacklisted at the immigration. The officials have also mentioned that the meeting due with the Nepal government will only happen if they are guaranteed that they will face no problems in the immigration.

However, officials at the Melamchi Drinking Water Supply Board say that the Italian firm’s demands are unacceptable as they are the ones who have breached their contract. The project was conceptualised two decades ago but the Italian contractors were brought to complete the project only in 2013.

Cabinet scraps hospital named after Girija Prasad and Sushil Koiralas

Annapurna Post and The Himalayan Times reports that the Cabinet has decided to scrap two hospitals named after former prime ministers – Girija Prasad Koirala and Sushil Koirala – both leaders of the main opposition party Nepali Congress. The Ministry of Health and Population had proposed to set up a 100-bed GP Koirala National Centre for Respiratory Diseases in Tanahn and Sushil Koirala Prakhar Cancer Hospital in Banke.

Both projects had got approval from the Cabinet earlier. Health Secretary Kedar Bahadur Adhikari said the ministry had no option but to abide by the Cabinet decision.

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