From the Kathmandu Press: Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Major Nepali and English newspapers published from Kathmandu on Wednesday have prioritised a host of political issues including the pressure from lawmakers to provide pension to former members of Parliament, the Supreme Court order on Nepal Police IG appointment and subsequent resignation of DIG Nawaraj Silwal expressing dissatisfaction over the issue, and the government’s preparation to take action against Nepal Oil Corporation Executive Director Gopal Bahadur Khadka.

As the date of local level elections in Province 2 is coming closer, news stories related to the polls have also received prominence in the press today.


Government likely to take action against Khadka

NOC Executive Director Gopal Bahadur Khadka

After a couple of months since media and members of the public pointed the involvement of Nepal Oil Corporation’s Executive Director Gopal Bahadur Khadka in corruption while buying land in various parts of the country to build petroleum storage facilities, the government is likely to take action against him soon, major newspapers have reported.

According to Kantipur, the next Cabinet meeting will decide the action against Khadka and Minister for Supplies Shiva Kumar Mandal has been asked to prepare a proposal in this regard.

Likewise, The Himalayan Times lead story says the Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers has told the Ministry of Supplies to promptly initiate action against those involved in the Nepal Oil Corporation land acquisition scam.

A probe committee headed by Supplies Secretary Krishna Prasad Devkota has recommended to the government to take action against Khadka for his involvement in the scam and the government is likely to remove him from the top position, according to Republica lead story.

Ministers ahead of others in breaching election code

File image: Bijay Kumar Gachhadar

Incidents of violation of election code of conduct are on the rise and the involvement of ministers in such cases have become worrisome, Nepal Samacharpatra and Rajdhani have reported in the front page today.

Samacharpata says the Election Commission has recently sought clarifications from Deputy Prime Minister Bijay Kumar Gachhadar, Home Minister Janardan Sharma and State Minister for Irrigation Amar Singh Pun on the charge of violating election code.

Just on Wednesday, the Commission sought clarification from Deputy Speaker Ganga Prasad Yadav, who belongs to the Rastriya Prajatantra Party, for violating the code, the report had quoted Commission’s spokesperson Nawaraj Dhakal.

Meanwhile, the Commission has issued a four-point directive in the name of government after reports of ministers’ involvement in the code violation has increased, according to Rajdhani. It has urged the Prime Minister and ministers not to take part in inauguration of council meetings of municipalities and rural municipalities, the report says.


Department of Immigration to outsource visa processing job

The Department of Immigration is planning to outsource visa processing service to private companies in a bid to decentralise the service in line with the newly carved-out federal setup, reports Karobar.

The Ministry of Home Affairs recently endorsed a three-year immigration improvement plan of action, which introduces outsourcing, the report says, adding after the implementation of the plan, ‘visa processing shops’ will be established in various places of seven provinces.

The plan says the government needs to spend Rs 2 billion for the project, which is expected to yield the revenue of Rs 15 billion.

Immigration Department’s Chief Deepak Kafle says Parliament, Cabinet and other concerned bodies will discuss further to finalise the procedure for establishing such shops.

RJPN internal rifts mar poll campaign

Rastriya Janata Party Nepal leaders make public the party’s local level election manifesto, in Kathmandu, on Thursday, September 7, 2017.

The Madhesh-centric Rastriya Janata Party Nepal is taking part in the third phase of local level elections in Province 2 scheduled for next week with a big hope to emerge as the biggest force in the region. But, some internal rifts within the party formed out of merger of six forces has hit the poll campaigning, according to Republica anchor story.

The distribution of candidacy tickets for the polls has widened the rifts and some members of the presidium have boycotted electioneering programmes, according to the report.

RJPN leaders say the presidium members have divided the eight districts of the province among themselves and decided to campaign only in the assigned districts. The top leaders have taken the overall charge of the districts where they had played key role in candidate selection. The party had divided tickets among the presidium members after they failed to select candidates unanimously, the report informs.


Central bank releases new banknotes worth Rs 6 billion for Dashain

File image: Nepal Rastra Bank

The central bank of Nepal has sent new banknotes of various denominations worth Rs 6 billion in total for the upcoming Dashain festival, reports Abhiyan.

The Nepal Rastra Bank allows members of the public to exchange their old banknotes with the new ones ahead of the greatest festival of the country every year, and this year, the exchange will begin today, according to the report.

The NRB has fixed 16 places including five branches of Nepal Bank Limited and Agricultural Development Bank each and six branches of Rastriya Banijya Bank to exchanges notes in Kathmandu Valley. They will provide the service for next 10 days.

Outside the Valley, regional offices of Nepal Rastra Bank and 77 other banks will provide the service.

Besides these places, other banks and financial institutions will also provide the exchange service to their clients.

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