Newspapers published from Kathmandu on Friday, both Nepali and English, have prioritised almost similar issues on their front pages today. They include discussions underway in both houses of Federal Parliament on the annual budget statement for next fiscal year, hearing on the case related to gold smuggling at the Morang District Court and post-unification activities in the Nepal Communist Party. The budget statement has created a range of issues for newspapers and reporters as they have analysed different aspects of the document in their stories.
Besides them, few other issues from political, sociocultural and economic spheres have made to the front pages today.
Budget fails to satisfy lawmakers of both sides
Almost all major newspapers published from the capital today have reported that lawmakers of ruling Nepal Communist Party have also criticised the annual budget statement presented by Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada on Tuesday.
While opposition lawmakers and those belonging to the Madhesh-centric parties said the budget did not reflect sentiments of federalism, some lawmakers of the ruling party commented that it failed to embrace socialistic features of economy, according to The Kathmandu Post.
Kantipur, however, claims the lawmakers expressed their dissatisfaction as they were barred from using Rs 40 million they would get from the Constituency Development Fund on their own. Republica has a different reason as it writes, “The lawmakers came down heavily on Khatiwada for his remark that he allocated the constituency budget only because he found himself in a trap of the lawmakers’ making.”
On the other hand, chief ministers of all seven provinces have expressed their dissatisfaction of the allocated amount to their provinces and proposed prorgrammes, according to Naya Patrika lead story. Karobar lead story also laims that economists and experts have also remarked that the budget was against sentiments of federalism.
SSP Khatri sent to judicial custody
The Morang District Court on Wednesday decided to send Nepal Police SSP Shyam Khatri to judicial custody after he could not convince the bench that he was not involved in recent gold smuggling cases led by Chudamani Upreti aka Gore, according to newspaper reports.
Khatri pleaded innocent as the court recorded his statement, but the bench said he might have been directly involved in the crime after getting bribed, according to Kantipur.
During his statement, SSP Khatri told justices that he could not control smuggling due to then DIG Govinda Niraula, reports Rajdhani. Niraula has also been arrested in connection with the case.
Annapurna Post analyses that the ongoing investigation into the case might lose its momentum as suspects of the case blame each other for their involvement whereas the investigators have also not employed modern technologies to figure out the truth.
NCP directive to unify sister organisations
Gorkhapatra and Rajdhani report that the ruling Nepal Communist Party has issue an internal directive to facilitate the unification between sister organisations of then CPN-UML and CPN-Maoist Centre. The directive has set a deadline of three months to complete the process, according to Gorkhapatra.
On the other hand, the party decided to establish central offices in two places—Dhumbarahi and Parisdanda—where there used to be central offices of the CPN-UML and the CPN-Maoist Centre respectively, according to Naya Patrika.
Meanwhile, the party adopted the ‘one person: one post’ system giving an end to the system of assigning a single member with more than two responsibilities, Rajdhani reports, adding the party has also forbidden its Central Committee members from holding positions in lower committees.
Another report in the same paper informs that total 36 task forces are active in merging lower level committees established by then CPN-UML and CPN-Maoist Centre.
‘Sherpa guide murdered on Hillary Step’
Families of a Nepali Sherpa guide, who has gone incommunicado since May 14, have claimed that Lambabu Sherpa might have been murdered by members of his expedition team from Ukraine, according to Annapurna Post lead story.
The families have demanded that the government launch an investigation and reveal the truth.
The Ukrainian climbers killed him near the famous Hillary Step and three his body on the Tibet side as he could reveal secrets about their involvement in the criptocurrency transaction, according to the report.
Big buses to ply BP Highway, risking life of passengers
Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport Raghubir Mahaseth has forced officials of his Ministry to dismiss two reports which had suggested that big buses with more seats be barred from plying the BP Highway and issue permits to 32-seater buses too, according to Karobar.
Earlier, the vehicles with more than 32 seat capacities were barred owing to narrow and serpentine roads as the likelihood of accidents would increase otherwise.
Prime Minister embraces high-tech promotion styles
Following suit of foreign politicians, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has also embraced new technologies in his daily activities so as to inform people about his government, better and more effectively, reports Annapurna Post.
While he has already began using teleprompters in his speeches and making some video announcements too, he has also planned to begin a radio programme from this month later, according to the report.
The report quotes PM’s press advisor Kundan Aryal to say that the change was possible as the PM himself showed his interests in these technologies.