Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Prime Life: Redefining life insurance

KATHMANDU, June 27: Ever since its establishment in 2008, Prime Life Insurance has carved a niche for itself in the Nepali insurance sector.

In the very first year of its establishment, the company was able to earn a net profit of Rs 56.7 million, which is a rare case amongst insurance companies in Nepal as only 4.7 percent of the total population is insured.

Prime Life Insurance, established with the investment of Rs 700 million, is one of the leading life insurance companies in the country. The company has issued over 225,000 policies and collected Rs 650 million as premium so far.

The simple motto of the company -- being small and efficient is not at all enough for the progress, one really needs to be big -- has proved to be the driving force for its success.

The company continues to be among the fastest growing life insurance companies in the country with incremental growth in premium, quality of business, customer service and assurance of good return.

All the branches of the companies are connected with international software called Soham Life, which has been helping the company a lot with the policy settlement process, efficient work and claim settlement process.

The fast growing company has a total workforce of 120 people in 45 locations. The company, which already has presence in 36 districts, plans to open 40 more branches in the near future.

“We have an agent network of 700 people and we plan to double it in the coming years,” Resta Jha, CEO of Prime Life Insurance, told myrepublica.com.

The aggressive marketing campaigns launched by the company have not just turned out to be beneficial for the overall insurance sector but have also disseminated a clear message about the importance of branding and campaigns for a business to flourish. For Prime Life, branding is something that actually helps capture the market effectively.

“Our campaigns have not just brought in more clients for us. They have contributed a lot in building a strong goodwill,” Jha said, adding, “At a time when people are cultivating doubts on the credibility of insurance due to controversies surrounding Unity Life International, our policies are increasing at an impressive rate.”

Insurance till date is being considered as a push market, but we are working really hard to turn insurance market as a pull market, Jha added.

The company also plans to invest in real sector such as health in coming years. “We have long term funds and we need to get long term investments, so we are planning to invest in real sector to contribute to the market in terms of employment and products,” Jha said.

As a part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), the company plans to contribute in education, health and community development sectors by supporting Ama Samuha in Syangja district with its corporate logo ´Your Life is Prime Life´.

Of the six life insurance products introduced by Prime Life, the company is putting major focus on Prime Life Dhansagar and Prime Life Swarnim Bima. With the introduction of these products, Prime Life has proved that life insurance does not only functions on a need basis but also on the basis of the attractiveness of a product.

These two products have been doing very well in the market and they cover almost 50 percent of our client base, Jha added.

“There has been a growth in awareness level of people about the importance of insurance. This is inviting better market opportunities,” Jha said.

He, however, said proper licensing of insurance companies and the role of government in informing people about the credibility of insurance companies is vital for the insurance sector to tap the market in more efficient way. It is also very important to stop capital flight of insurance due to improper marketing, Jha added.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=20398

Monday, June 28, 2010

2 Nepalis found murdered in Malaysia

KATHMANDU, June 28: Two Nepalese workers believed to have been murdered, were found near the Muneswaran Temple in Bandar Puteri Jaya in Sungai Petani in Malaysia at about 3 a.m. Monday morning. The place is about 380 km north of Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.

According to the New Straits Times, the two victims, L. Doral, 35, and P. Narayan, 26, workers at a Hypermarket in Bandar Puteri Jaya, were murdered a few hours earlier. They were found by their house mates.

According to a house mate of the victims, Lal Prakand, 30, he and a number of friends found the bodies of Doral and Narayan about a kilometer away from their work place.

"When we found their bodies, their intestines were exposed due to deep cuts in their stomach while their necks were also slashed," Prakand who stayed with the victims at Taman Puteri Jaya told reporters in Sungai Petani on Monday.

He added that both his house mates were supposed to have returned home after work at 11 a.m. Sunday but since they had not returned home until 12 midnight, their employer had lodged a police report.

Prakand said the victims who had worked for more than a year, had no enemies.

Meanwhile, Kedah CID Chief ACP Mohd Zakaria Ahmad who confirmed the incident said police were carrying out investigations to determine the motive for the murder.

"We have not made any arrest so far," he said.

Mohd Zakaria added that both their bodies had been sent to the Sultan Abdul Halim Hospital in Sungai Petani for post-mortem.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=20410

Friday, June 25, 2010

Only Bhattarai can lead national unity govt

NEPALGUNJ, June 24: Tarai Madhes Democratic Party (TMDP) Vice Chairman Brishesh Chandra Lal said on Thursday that all Maoist leaders except Dr Baburam Bhattarai were ´disqualified´ to lead a national consensus government.

Speaking at an interaction organized by Awadhi Journalists Association, Lal said Dr Bhattarai could lead the new national consensus government should the Maoist choose to pick him as a prime ministerial candidate.

"The Maoists should not delay in picking his name since there is a situation of national consensus for his name," he said. "Dr Baburam Bhattarai is the only consensus prime minister candidate in the present context."

TMDP General Secretary and State Minister for Education Gobinda Chaudhari said parties must forge consensus at the earliest since promulgation of new constitution is not possible without the formation of a national consensus government. He alleged that big three parties had ignored Madhes-based parties while making crucial decisions.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=20278

Monday, June 21, 2010

NRB limits IC exchange through ATM cards

KATHMANDU, June 21: Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) has introduced new rules related to exchange facilities for Indian rupee that, among other, has limited Indian rupees withdrawals from Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in India by using electronic cards issued by Nepali banks.

Central bank officials said the new measures were aimed at checking illegal trading of Indian currency, particularly in bordering cities, and to ensure adequate supplies of Indian currency (IC) to those who are in real need.

According to the directives issued on Friday, individuals having ATM cards issued by Nepali financial institutions can now withdraw IC worth Rs 200,000 per month from the banks based in India. Earlier the limit was Rs 25,000 per day.

The main purpose of the new directives is to discourage those who are engaged in illegal trading of IC in bordering cities.

We have noticed activities of hundreds of individuals, who deposit huge sum of Nepali rupees in Nepali banks and withdraw it from banks across the boarder to sell them at higher rates in Nepal,” said an official of the central bank.

According to media reports, IC notes are being sold at as high as Rs 165 per IRs 100 in the bordering cities of Nepal mainly after banks in the regions failed to supply IC as per the demand. NRB has fixed Rs 160 for each IRs 100 as an official exchange rate between the two currencies.

Though the central bank allows exchange facilities equivalent to IRs 25,000 to individual without stating purpose, banks have not been able to do so due to huge mismatch between demand and supply of IC.

The same directive has also authorized financial institutions in the country to cancel ATM cards of those individuals who are found engaged in such suspicious transactions. It also allows banks to provide additional IC exchange facilities to those who are studying in India.

However, those seeking such facilities are required to produce valid documents. Earlier, students were taking IC exchange on the basis of facilities provided to individuals.

The new directive allows importers from India to get IC exchange facilities from banks to pay to the transporters. The importers, however, will have to produce Customs Declaration Form along with other related documents to enjoy the facility.

Currently, NRB has an IC reserve of Rs 20 billion and the central bank has spent $1.6 billion to buy equivalent Indian currency to finance the deficit of IC in Nepal due to dwindling exports and soaring imports from the southern neighbor.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=20121

ADB Extends over $72 Million to Help Nepal Expand Credit Access to Rural Poor

MANILA, PHILIPPINES - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide $72 million in further assistance to Nepal for an ongoing program aimed at helping poor and isolated rural communities access credit and financial services.

The ADB Board of Directors today approved a loan of $60.4 million equivalent, and a grant of $12.1 million, both from its concessional Asian Development Fund, for the second phase of the Rural Finance Sector Development Cluster Program, and for a related sector project.

Nepal is emerging from a decade-long period of conflict into a new phase of reconciliation and rebuilding, and has made substantial headway in reducing poverty. But in the countryside, including remote hill communities, poverty rates remain high. A lack of access to affordable credit is a key factor holding back development, as rural households are unable to access funds from the formal sector, forcing them to tap informal sources such as money lenders who typically charge high interest rates.

The cluster program aims to remove obstacles to credit access in rural communities by carrying out institutional and policy changes designed to make rural financial institutions more willing and able to provide credit and services to those in need.

Under the second phase of the program, reforms in the Agricultural Development Bank Ltd ― the country’s largest commercial lender ― will be completed, including a capital restructuring which will involve the entry of a private strategic investor, marking the first major financial privatization in Nepal. This will be complemented by reforms at the Small Farmers Development Bank with the goal of increasing credit access to 20,000 more marginal farmers in remote mountainous areas by 2012. Support will be given to develop and expand credit information services for microfinance institutions and savings and credit cooperatives, and to provide specialist skills training for financial institutions.

“The policy and institutional reforms under this phase of the program will transform key rural financial institutions into viable finance intermediaries with a strong client orientation and pro-poor focus, while improving the efficiency and outreach of semiformal institutions,” said Mayumi Ozaki, Finance Specialist, Rural and Microfinance, in ADB’s South Asia Department.

The cluster program is targeting an increase in credit access to the rural poor from 1 million accounts in 2008, to 1.17 million by 2012, and an increase in women’s access to finance from 200,000 accounts to 283,000 over the same period.

ADB’s loan ― which will help cover adjustment costs related to the restructure of key rural finance institutions ― has a 24-year term, including a grace period of 8-years, with interest charged at 1% per annum during the grace period and 1.5% for the balance of the term. The grant will help fund a sector project to develop a legal framework and regulatory authority to supervise and develop capacity at rural finance institutions. An additional grant of $200,000 from ADB’s Technical Assistance Special Fund will provide capacity support to assist Agricultural Development Bank’s transformation.

The Ministry of Finance is the executing agency for the program, which is due for completion around June 2012.

Source: http://www.adb.org/Media/Articles/2010/13254-nepalese-credit-access/

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Teenage Maoist soldier recounts her horror

Forced to join Nepal´s Maoist guerrilla army at the age of 13, Manju Gurung told a Security Council meeting on protecting children in armed conflict Wednesday that she represented all youngsters who faced and survived the atrocities of war.

Now 18 years old, Manju spoke at an open council meeting considering a report by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that urged the U.N.´s most powerful body to consider tough measures — including possible sanctions — against countries and insurgent groups that persist in recruiting child soldiers and continue violating international law on the rights and protection of children in armed conflicts.

At the end of the daylong meeting Wednesday, the council was set to approve a presidential statement expressing "its readiness to adopt targeted and graduated measures against persistent perpetrators."

The daughter of a poor rickshaw driver, Manju described how the Maoists came to her village in central Nepal in September 2005 and demanded that each family send one member to join a program the rebel group was conducting for seven days. That week stretched into two years during which Manju said she helped dig roads, survived 14-hour jungle walks, learned to fire an AK-47, and became a commander but was demoted to being a cook after she fainted and asked for medical treatment but was accused of faking to avoid work.

The meeting followed the council´s adoption last August of a resolution authorizing the naming and shaming of countries and insurgent groups engaged in conflicts that lead to children being killed, maimed and raped. The resolution, sponsored by Mexico, reaffirmed the council´s intention "to take action" against persistent violators.

Mexico currently holds the Security Council presidency and it chose to focus on the secretary-general´s report released last month, which for the first time included a list of violators that have been monitored for at least five years. These include Somalia´s transitional government, Congo´s armed forces, Myanmar´s army, and rebel groups in Congo, Myanmar, the Philippines, Colombia, Sudan and Uganda.

The report also named two parties that try to maim or kill children in conflict — Somalia´s government and al-Shabab Islamist militants trying to overthrow it. And for the first time it named seven parties that commit rape and sexual violence against youngsters — six in Congo and Uganda´s Lord´s Resistance Army, which is notorious for kidnapping children and using them as fighters and sex slaves.

"In the last two decades, more than two million children in armed conflict areas have died," Mexico´s Foreign Relations Secretary Patricia Espinosa said, "an additional six million have been handicapped, more than a quarter of a million have been exploited as child soldiers in various regions in the world, and thousands more have been victims of sexual exploitation, rape and prostitution."

Manju described how "sad and painful" her life with the Maoists was, how she went home briefly but was "terrified" by the rebel group´s threats and was recruited again. Six months later, she got to return to her village but she said she returned to the Maoists after about 10 days because "villagers treated me badly, bullied me and were talking behind my back."

In 2007, when Manju was finishing combat training, she said close friends told her it was always the youngest who were sent to the frontlines.

"Luckily, after I was trained and they were planning to send me to the next round of active fighting, the peace agreement was signed and I did not have to fight," she said.

Unlike many other young Maoist fighters who lost their lives, Manju returned home in May 2007, a "very happy" 15-year-old but also scared that the Maoist Party would take her again or that the Nepalese army "would kill me if they found out who I was."

Because of suspicions in her village, she was forced to move to a nearby city where she worked as a maid. But with the help of several human rights groups helping children affected by armed conflict, she is now home again, back in school and the president of a club that advocates for child rights and HIV issues.

"And I still dream of becoming a teacher," Manju told the council.

Radhika Coomaraswamy, the U.N. special representative for children in armed conflict, told the council the Maoists have released almost 3,000 children who were sent home, and there have also been some successes with groups in the Philippines and Sudan.

But she said the list of governments and groups that have used children in conflicts for at least five years is long, and "it is my duty to persuade this body to move forward on taking action against these violators."

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19969

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

TU can host int'l matches: ICC

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has lifted the conditional ban on the TU Ground, Kirtipur to host international matches after an inspection.

ICC chief Executive, in his letter to Binaya Raj Pandey, the president of Cricket Association of Nepal, said: “I am pleased to confirm that international matches can continue to be staged at the ground with immediate effect.”

ICC has put a conditional ban on TU in November after the crowd trouble during Nepal vs USA league match of the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 5. The match was disturbed by spectators who threw in bottles, mud and bricks into the ground.

ICC had instructed can to solidify the boundary walls and carry on remedial works to ensure no further trouble at the ground.

David Becker visited Kathmandu on May to inspect the remedial works and based on his reports, ICC lifted the ban.

“Mr. Becker has reported that the work that has been carried out is satisfactory and reasonable having regard the nature and location of the ground,” Lorgat wrote.

He also noted that CAN has placed a cement covering over the top of all the walls in and around the ground, to contain and secure the bricks; placed steel reinforcement underneath the cement covering so if persons lean on or against the walls, they will be sufficiently robust; and fixed and secured the two old sections of the wall.

Lorgat has also asked CAn for continuous monitoring of the walls in questions and ensure appropriate safety and security measures at the ground on an ongoing basis in future.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19946

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

22 months after death, body back from Saudi

KATHMANDU: It has been a long wait for the kin of late Ramesh Giri — who went to Saudi Arab in search of greener pastures some five years ago but was killed there — to get his body back.

“After 22 months of his death in Saudi Arabia his body was sent to Nepal for last rites today,” said Giri’s cousin Dambar Giri, who had been trying to get the body deported to Nepal since Ramesh’s death. The body will be taken to Ramesh’s home in Morang for the last rites, he added.

Ramesh (31), a resident of Belbari in Morang district, had been to Saudi in July 2005. He died in a motorbike accident on August 20, 2008. “His mother died with grief for not being able to offer last rites,” Giri’s cousin said. “No one helped us bring the body back. Everyone, including the company he was working for and the manpower company that sent him, passed the buck on others.”

Finally, the Employment Promotion Board gave Rs 581,000 to the family to bring the body back. Giri is survived by his parents, wife and three daughters. His wife Meena has been grappling with financial crisis, as she doesn’t have money to meet the expenses of her daughters’ education. Ramesh had taken a loan from his neighbour to pay for his travel expenses to Saudi Arabia.

Ramesh’s body had been lying at Dammam’s Al-Sathi Hospital in Saudi Arabia.

Nepali Embassy in Saudi Arabia too was unable to send the body to Nepal due to stringent legal process. The embassy said Ramesh had illegally switched jobs during his stay in Saudi Arabia. He got killed while he was working sans valid work permit. Police had been refusing to hand over his body and the companies he worked for did not take the responsibility, as he changed jobs on his own.

Foreign Employment Promotion Board collects Rs 1,000 from each migrant worker when they leave for foreign shores. “If they die during the contract period, they get Rs 1 lakh as compensation,” Sthaneshwor Devkota, DG of FEPB said. If they meet with accidents, they get medical allowance of up to Rs 1 lakh.” But Giri’s case falls in neither category.

Migrant workers send remittance that has been the life line of Nepali economy. The country received Rs 209.69 billion — that is 23.6 per cent to the GDP — as remittance in the last fiscal year.

Source: http://www.thehimalayantimes.com/fullNews.php?headline=22+months+after+death%2C+body+back+from+Saudi&NewsID=246974

APF wants 5,907 more personnel

The Armed Police Force (APF) has requested the government to approve vacancies for additional 5,907 personnel in its organization.

Sources at the Home Ministry said APF Headquarters recently forwarded a proposal to this effect to the ministry as part of the recruitment the government agreed in principle last year to enforce Special Security Plan in the country. The ministry is preparing to send the proposal to the Ministry of Finance for its nod.

The APF said the fresh recruitment is necessary to upgrade APF outposts based in various parts of the country and also set up additional outposts in the districts identified as ´security sensitive´ areas.

APF wants to add two Deputy Inspector Generals (DIGs), three SSPs, 5 SPs, 26 DSPs and 130 inspectors, 200 sub-inspectors, 297 assistant sub-inspectors, 577 senior head constables, 610 head constables, 992 assistant head constables, 2,753 constables, 16 constables (technical) and 296 followers to its organization.

The Home Ministry had sought consent from the Ministry of Finance to recruit an additional 11,388 APF personnel to enforce the Special Security Plan last year to bolster law and order situation in the country. The Ministry of Finance had given its nod for recruiting only 5,481 APF personnel in July, 2009.

The strength of the APF currently stands at 31,216.

Last week, the Ministry of Finance gave its nod to recruit additional 3,999 personnel in Nepal Police as first installment of the recruitment the cabinet last year agreed in principle for enforcing the Special Security Plan. The Home Ministry had sought consent from the Ministry of Finance to recruit a total of 10,001 personnel to the 56,077-strong Nepal Police.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19891

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dahal complains of betrayal

Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal said on Sunday that the ruling Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN-UML betrayed his party by not implementing the midnight deal reached just before the extension of the Constituent Assembly (CA) term on May 28.

“There was a gentleman´s agreement, along with the three-point deal signed minutes before the CA extension deadline, that the prime minister would step down unconditionally within five days. But 15 days have passed since then. The ruling parties lied to us,” Dahal said during an interaction with industrialists in the capital.

The Maoist chairman argued that his party pushed for the resignation of the prime minister and national consensus government as the CA term extension itself was not a solution. “So an agreement was reached to move ahead with consensus. But we were betrayed,” he said.

Dahal urged the industrialists to pressurize the ruling parties into implementing the deal to write a new constitution and take the peace process to a logical end.

“The implementation of the deal will pave the way for a new political consensus. So you must pressurize the government from your side,” said Dahal who was flanked by party vice chairmen Dr Baburam Bhattarai and Narayankaji Shrestha.

The industrialists asked the Maoist leadership to clarify their economic policy, forge common minimum economic agendas among the political parties, and refrain from market shut-downs and road blockades to give the economy a new lease of life.

Replying the queries of the industrialists, Dr Bhattarai said his party wants nationalization of land to end the current semi-feudal land-owning system, accumulate national capital for investment and rev up the process of industrial development. "Then the pieces of land can be leased to the people," he said.

He also argued that the Maoist party would not end the system of private property. "Be assured that we would not end the system of private property. We cannot go further than that," he said adding that his party would only rev up the process of transition from“"semi-feudal system into a capitalist society".

According to him, the government would invest in certain sectors, while encouraging the national industrialists to invest in the rest.

He argued his party would take the country out of the rising imports and declining exports. He said the current balance of payment (BOP) crisis has its roots in Sugauli Treaty. "The export was five times more than import before the treaty. So we must understand the root causes and address them," he said.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19845

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Bhatbhateni scholarship to 2 MBBS students

KATHMANDU: The Bhatbhateni Group as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has provided scholarships to two students from the remote districts of Rolpa and Khotang for five-year long MBBS programmes at a leading medical college.

Min Bahadur Gurung, managing director of the Bhatbhateni Group and his wife Sabitri Gurung have offered Shailesh Shrestha of Khotang and Dhanamaya Gharti Magar of Rolpa scholarships to completed their studies at Patan Health and Science Academy (PHSA).

“It is my salutation to the country and the place of my birth,” said Gurung after a tripartite agreement involving PHSA, the two students and the Bhatbhateni Group.

“Gurung, who is from Khotang, is a self-made entrepreneur and has fought his way up the success,” said Binod Chaudhary, Constituent Assembly (CA) member and president of Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI), lauding his noble deed.

If the government supports, the private sector can bring a huge change in this country, he said adding that during the conflict also, it was the private sector which saved the economy.

“The private sector is more responsible in the socio-economic transformation of the country,” said Surendra Bir Malakar, president of Nepal Chambers of Commerce (NCC) while speaking on the occasion.

“Despite government apathy, the private sector has contributed a lot to the country,” he said, lauding the Gurung couple for their contribution towards the nation.

Apart from health sector, the Bhatbhateni Group has contributed to many sectors including education. The Group has two supermarkets in Kathmandu and is planning to open a chain of supermarkets across the country.

Source: http://www.thehimalayantimes.com/fullNews.php?headline=Bhatbhateni+scholarship+to+2+MBBS+students&NewsID=246780

Power cut up by 12 hours a week

KATHMANDU, June 12: Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has increased load-shedding by 12 hours a week, thereby taking the total weekly power cut to 54 hours -- nine hours a day for four days and six hours a day for three days. The new load-shedding timings will be applicable from Monday.

NEA took a decision to this affect on Saturday and has already made public a notice in this regard as the water-level in the rivers have gone down. Earlier, the people were facing 42 hours weekly power cut, with a flat power cut of six hours daily.

The power cut hours has gone up due to delay in monsoon showers, which usually begins by June 10.

“Since we have had no monsoon rain so far, we had to increase the load-shedding hours,” Sher Singh Bhat, the director at the Systems Operation Department of NEA, said. He, however, added, “Things should improve within a week´s time if we receive adequate rainfall.”

During this time last year load-shedding had already come down to 28 hours per week.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19819

Friday, June 11, 2010

Samjhana Finance betrayed investors, went in red: NRB

Nepal Rastra Bank on Thursday declared Samjhana Finance, a Banepa-based finance company ‘crisis-ridden.’ NRB said the bases of declaring the company crisis-ridden are its capital fund (negative by 35.04 percent) and its high non-performing loan (as high as 49.02 percent).

The central bank said in a notice that it declared it crisis-ridden as it was not satisfied with the reply by the latter on the latter’s financial status.

Interestingly, the Finance Company has presented the better financial status of the company such as positive capital fund of 8.3 percent, NPL of just 3.1 percent in its third quarterly report published on June 7. The NRB board on Wednesday directed the central bank to submit a report on Samjhana Finance as its financial status was declining. The company turned sick due to lack of good corporate governance on the part of its promoters.

The company was going through acute liquidity crisis and was not able to return the deposits of its depositors. According to NRB, the company failed to implement the directives issued earlier. The central bank had told Samjhana to comply with 10 new directives within six months.

Amongst the directives, the finance company should reduce its NPL to below five percent, sell its all non-banking assests and recover loans taken by its promoters. It has been told to maintain capital fund at the level directed by NRB which should be positive by 11 percent. NRB also directed it to recover all loans that were given without

collateral and remained insecure, take action against officials and employees involved in irregularies and then inform NRB and maintain accounts system as directed by the central bank.

The central bank also directed the finance company to allow withdrawal of matured deposits, carry out external auditing and ensure environment for corporate governmance.

Until these directives are fulfilled within six months, the finance company has been barred from collecting additional deposits and renewing existing ones, borrwing additional fund, provide lending and guarantee and renew them, make additional invesment and open new branches.

Similarly, the central bank has also barred it from obtaining fixed assets through purchase or lease, increase allowance of directors and salary of employees and recruit new employees and promote them.

Source: http://www.ekantipur.com/the-kathmandu-post/2010/06/10/business/samjhana-finance-betrayed-investors-went-in-red-nrb/209267/

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Girl dies in cellphone explosion

POKHARA, June 8: One girl died after her cellphone which was being charged exploded on Wednesday.

Nikita Thapa, 16, of Bharat Pokhari, Kaski died after her cellphone exploded.

Thapa who fainted following the explosion died while being taken to hospital, Sub Inspector Dambar Adhikari said.

Meanwhile, Thapa´s uncle Khum Bahadur Thapa said that Nikita was electrocuted while she was talking in her phone which was being charged.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19641

81 foreign TV channels seek downlink permit in Nepal

KATHMANDU, June 7: Altogether 81 foreign TV channels have applied for downlink permission with the Ministry of Information and Communications (MoIC) to broadcast in Nepal.

According to Joint Secretary Narayan Prasad Regmi, Spokesperson at MoIC, the applications were received after the ministry invited the same from parties concerned as per the new government policy that makes it mandatory to acquire downlink permission to air any foreign TV channel within Nepali territory.

“The ministry has received a total 81 applications from different foreign TV channels seeking to broadcast in Nepal,” said Regmi during a press briefing at the ministry, Monday. “The ministry will give permission bearing in mind the language and content broadcast in the respective TV channels.”

According to the National Broadcast Regulations 2052 BS Fourth Amendment, foreign TV channels wishing to broadcast in Nepal must get downlink permission from MoIC.

The amendment to the regulations published in the government gazette on December 7, 2009 set a six-month deadline for foreign TV channels or their authorized agents in Nepal to acquire such permission. The amendment also allows the authorities to ban any foreign TV channel deemed detrimental to the well-being of society or the national interest.

Spokesperson Regmi said they have reached an agreement with Nepal Cable TV Association and pay channel distributors to stop broadcasting TV channels that fail to receive downlink permission from MoIC.

As per the newly introduced provision, foreign TV channels that also broadcast commercials need to pay Rs 25,000 and those without commercials, Rs 50,000, to acquire downlink permission in Nepal. The permission is subject to renewal every year.

Officials at MoIC said district administration offices and post offices are entrusted with the task of monitoring if any cable operators are airing TV channels other than those they have permission for. The local administration will direct the cable distributor concerned to stop airing foreign TV channels that have failed to acquire downlink permission.

TV channels applying for downlink permission

1. Discovery Channel
2. Animal Planet
3. Discovery Travel & Living
4. Discovery Science
5. Discovery Turbo
6. Ten Sport
7. Sahara One
8. Sahara Filmy
9. BBC World News
10. NDTV 24X7
11. NDTV Profit
12. HBO
13. Cine Max
14. 9XM
15. National Geographic Channel
16. Fox History & Entertainment Channel
17. The MGM Channel
18. Aajtak
19. Headlines Today
20. ESPN
21. Star Sports
22. Star Cricket
23. Neo Sports
24. Neo Cricket
25. Music India
26. Sangeet Bhojpuri
27. Sangeet Bangla
28. BBC Nepali Sewa (Audio)
29. Imagine Showbiz
30. Muhuaa TV- Bangla
31. Muhuaa TV-Bhojpuri
32. BBC Entertainment
33. C Beebies
34. Zoom
35. Divya
36. Imagine TV
37. Lumiere Movies
38. Pragya
39. Star News
40. Star Ananda
41. Star Majha
42. Star Plus
43. Star One
44. Star Gold
45. Star Utsav
46. Star World
47. Star Movies
48. Channel (V)
49. Disney
50. Disney XD
51. Colors
52. Sony
53. MAX
54. SAB
55. Musical Channel
56. UTV Movies
57. UTV Bindass
58. UTV World Movies
59. Bloomberg UTV
60. Nick
61. VH1
62. MTV
63. Channel News Asia
64. Nat Geo Wild
65. Nat Geo Adventure
66. Nat Geo Music
67. National Geographic HD
68. FX
69. Fox Crime
70. Baby TV
71. Zee Trendz
72. Zee TV
73. Zee Cinema
74. Zee Sports
75. Zee News
76. Zee Cafe
77. Zee Studio
78. CNN
79. Cartoon Network
80. Warner Brothers (WB)
81. Pogo

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19620

Monday, June 7, 2010

OHCHR to stay for one more year

KATHMANDU, June 6: After protracted negotiations with the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva, the government has decided to let the operation of the OHCHR´s Nepal office for one more year but with a "drastically" narrowed mandate and closure of its field offices.

A meeting of the cabinet on Sunday took a decision on OHCHR-Nepal´s mandate extension in line with "an agreement in principle" with the OHCHR in Geneva, said sources in the cabinet and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA). This is the fifth term extension of OHCHR-N since its establishment in 2005.

"Four regional offices will be closed down as soon as possible," a cabinet member told myrepublica.com on condition of anonymity.

The source did not want to be named in the news, saying the matter is still secret until Nepal and OHCHR-Nepal sign an agreement on mandate renewal.

According to the sources, the movement of the UN rights body will be restricted. "OHCHR-N will be able to visit a place it wants only after getting prior permission from MoFA," said a source.

OHCHR-N had been enjoying an unrestricted movement and access to any place for human rights monitoring and investigation under the mandate with which it came to Nepal in 2005 when human rights situations was grave.

Sources said the movement of OHCHR-N will be restricted and it will be able to visit a place it wants only after getting prior permission from Foreign Ministry.
Defending the decision on mandate reduction, a MoFA source said, "The context when OHCHR came to Nepal has changed now. Moreover, we have the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) with constitutional status to monitor rights situation now while the rights watchdog was only a statutory one in 2005."

OHCHR, European and US ambassadors in Kathmandu had lobbied for continuation of the previous mandate and asked the government not to curtail movement of the OHCHR-N. Besides, they had sought the mandate extension for two years.

Under the renewed mandate, the UN rights body is required to strengthen the national human rights institutions and carry out human rights monitoring and promotion in coordination with the NHRC.

"OHCHR is pleased to be in a position to help protection and promotion of human rights for another year and to support the peace process," said OHCHR-N chief Richard Bennett commenting on the government decision to renew the the term of his office.

But he refrained from commenting on the new mandate saying he was yet to know the scope of the new mandate. Sources said the new mandate will be effective once Nepal and OHCHR sign it in Geneva before the OHCHR-N´s current term expires on Wednesday.

Published on 2010-06-06 23:03:01

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19582

Sunday, June 6, 2010

REMA Training Course Fourth Day (February 17, 2010)

My few pics at REMA Training Course Fourth Day (February 17, 2010.

The topic was "Property Insurance"

Link: http://www.brihatinvestments.com/newsgallery-37

IB pushes for pension, micro-insurance schemes

KATHMANDU, June 5: Insurance Board (IB), the insurance regulatory authority of the country, has pushed for opening new insurance businesses like pension schemes and micro-insurance, aiming to cater to the socio-financial security needs of urban professionals as well as rural populace.

The Board has formally incorporated these major shifts in its policy in the new Insurance Act, which it recently forwarded to Ministry of Finance (MoF) for necessary actions for enactment.

Once enacted, the life insurance companies will be able to start pension schemes, something which the service sector professionals and private sector employees vulnerable to post-retirement financial security have been seeking direly. Under the scheme, they will be able to buy the scheme for different periods, after the maturity of which they will receive the return as pension.

Likewise, general insurance companies too will be able to start micro-insurance business targeting agricultural and livestock security and smaller financial security of rural populace as well as urban low-income groups.

So far, IB was not very enthusiastic about opening micro-insurance and pension insurance schemes.

The draft Act has also paves way for the establishment of Reinsurance Company in the country. Reinsurers are companies that cover risks of insurers, charging reinsurance premium from them, just as insurers charge insurance premium from the clients for covering their individual risks.

Currently, Nepali insurers are largely buying the reinsurance cover from Indian and British reinsurers.

The new Act has incorporated numerous prudential norms and tightened corporate governance norms for the companies.

Under these, companies will be asked to undertake actuarial valuation of their financial health and liability every year and announce bonus returns to the clients annually. Presently, the companies are doing so in every three years.

As goes with the insurance business, companies will need to maintain separate insurance fund for separate insurance business and maintain standing reserve fund to guarantee instant settlement of insurance liabilities as and when they arise. Companies can also maintain general reserve fund for security, but that is optional.

The draft Act seeks companies to maintain solvency margin, whereby their ratio of their total assets to liabilities must never fall below 1.25. “Insurers must not issue loans, guarantee and insurance security to the promoters, their family members and firms in which they hold the position of managing agent or have shares,” says the new draft.

The draft categorically asks companies to transfer at least 90 percent of their income as bonus returns to their clients. It has also incorporated provision on merger, acquisition and liquidation.

To fulfill the new regulatory challenges, the Act has proposed establishment of Nepal Insurance Authority (NIA) and transfer all assets and liabilities of IB to it. It has also proposed more teeth to the proposed NIA in order to enhance its regulatory capacity and render the insurance business more credible, competitive and fair.

It has proposed allowing the NIA to open regional offices, branches and sub-branches based on the need. The act has envisaged formation of a five-member policy recommendation body and seven-member investigation committee to dig out fraudulent activities carried out in the name of insurance.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19540

Saturday, June 5, 2010

I was abducted by NHJP: Dr Shrestha

KATHMANDU, June 5: " I was abducted by Nepal Hindu Janata Party (NHJP)," Dr Bhaktaman Shrestha said on Saturday after being released safe on Friday night after 19 days of his abduction.

Speaking with media at his * office quarters where reporters were not allowed to ask questions, Dr Shrestha said that he was not misbehaved but was blind-folded during his days in captivity and thanked everyone for their support.

He was handed over to his family at Sriraichuli hills bordering Kaule of Chitwan and Chandibhyanjyang of Dhading district. It was not immediately known who handed him over.

“He contacted his family Friday night and he is under our control,” police spokesperson Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Bigyan Raj Sharma confirmed.

Dr Shrestha reached his hospital quarters at Bharatpur at 7:00 a.m. Saturday accompanied by wife Sheelu and youngest brother Jagat Man in a vehicle (Ba 3 Cha 3847).

"It´s good news that he is safely released. We will investigate further to find out the details," Inspector General of Police (IGP) Ramesh Chand Thakuri said.

Dr Shrestha, the director of Bharatpur Cancer Hospital, was abducted on May 18. Although sources claimed that Maoists were behind the abduction, the party had denied any involvement.

A large number of people have gathered at Shrestha´s quarters after they heard he was released safely.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19512

Fire breaks out at UTL building

Friday, 4 June 2010 08:20

A fire broke out at Triveni complex in Putalisadak which houses the offices of United Telecom Limited (UTL), Nepal Tea Development Board (NTDB) and Triveni Trading Company, Friday morning.

The fire has destroyed property worth millions and important documents on the sixth floor of the complex. There were offices of NTDB and TTC on the sixth floor.

The fire that started about 6 am, this morning was taken in control after about two hours by fire brigades, security personnel and locals.

Police have suspected the fire could have started due to a short-circuit.

Source: http://www.nepalnews.com/main/index.php/news-archive/2-political/6544-fire-at-utl-building.html

Friday, June 4, 2010

Subsidized fertilizer sold at double price

POKHARA, June 3: Chemical fertilizer provided by the government at subsidy is being sold at double the original price. The fertilizer, which should be reaching farmers through cooperative shops and corporations, is being sold at different agro-vet centres at expensive rates.

Farmers are complaining about the blackmarketing in fertilizer like Urea, DAP and Potash at a time when crops are being cultivated. “Companies say the fertilizer is sold out and we are compelled to buy from the local market at double the price,” says one farmer.

The government decided on March 25 to sell 100,000 metric tons of chemical fertilizer to farmers at subsidy through cooperative shops. The total requirement of fertilizer in Nepal is 500,000 metric tons during the cultivation season.

Farmers say that they are made to pay extra in a blackmarket created by companies manufacturing the chemical fertilizer and by businessmen. The companies, however, say they have been giving the fertilizer only to authorized cooperative shops and cooperatives.

The lack of fertilizer at a proper price has led to active investigation by a monitoring committee. The committee has started taking statements from the businessmen and manufacturing companies.

Pushpa Raj Paudel, administrative officer at the district administration office who is with the monitoring committee, agreed that fertilizer that should be reaching farmers through cooperatives has been found in the market. He also added that businessmen suspected of selling the fertilizer are being taken under control and an investigation has started.

He disclosed that fertilizer found in the market is from companies like Harabhara Krishi Concern, Bastola Agro-Vet Center, Krishi Samagri Bhandar and Bhimkali Agro-Vet. About 50 sacks of fertilizer, said to have been given to Shivalaya Saving and Credit Cooperative, was found being sold by Bastola Agro-vet.

The directors of the agro-vet are giving out the excuse that they themselves are taking care of fertilizer belonging to the cooperatives. Some members of cooperatives as well are found to be selling the fertilizer at higher prices.

The district administration office has taken a statement from Khageshwar Panta, director of Harabhara Krishi Concern who is found to be selling fertilizer in the name of Bhrikuti Saving and Credit Cooperative where he is a member. He claims to be selling the fertilizer with permission from the cooperative.

Similarly, Gyanendra Chalise, director of Nepal Krishi Samagri Bhandar, says that he has brought the fertilizer from Chitwan and Birgunj and not from the company. He claimed that it was brought before the company started making fertilizer in Pokhara.

Companies manufacturing the fertilizer claim that they are providing fertilizer to farmers free of cost on the basis of their land ownership certificates or tax payment receipt.

“We have no idea who is selling the fertilizer. We provide the cooperative with valid documents and it´s none of our concern what they do with the fertilizer after taking it from us,” said Shanti Paudel, manager of the regional office of the manufacturing companies who accuses businessmen of selling the fertilizer in the market.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19456

Thursday, June 3, 2010

British climber dies after reaching Everest summit


BEIJING, June 3: A British climber died hours after summiting Mount Everest as he was unable to descend and fellow climbers couldn´t bring him down, a Chinese official and his climbing team said Thursday.

Peter Kinloch reached the top of the world´s highest mountain on the afternoon of May 25 but died early the next morning, according to SummitClimb, the British-based company he was climbing with.

"It is with our deepest regrets that we report the passing of Peter Kinloch, who was a bright spark in our team, and he is missed very much," the company´s statement said.

It did not give details of Kinloch´s death, but some British media reports said Kinloch went blind shortly after starting the descent and could not go on. The reports said fellow climbers struggled to help him down but risked putting themselves in danger and had to leave him in the early morning and retreat to camp below.

The 28-year-old motivational speaker was climbing the 29,035-foot (8,850-meter) mountain from the Chinese side, the lesser traveled but technically more difficult route. The mountain straddles China and Nepal, and hundreds of people try to climb it each year.

It was not clear whether an attempt would be made to retrieve his body. The bodies of other climbers have been left on the mountain in the past because of the harsh conditions.

"The geography of the area is very complicated, and the weather is often bad. Add the severe lack of oxygen, and it´s extremely hard for rescue work to be successfully carried out there," Wang Yongfeng, vice chairman of the China Mountaineering Association, told The Associated Press.

Kinloch is the fourth person to die among people climbing Everest from the Chinese side this year, Wang said.

"Mountaineering is a high-risk event, and the mountaineers are all aware of the risk beforehand," Wang said.

Kinloch seemed to know. "Mount Everest has a fearsome reputation and justifiably so," he wrote on his website. "Although not offering too much of a challenge technically the high altitude can stop even the strongest of climbers in their tracks."

Kinloch had been on a quest to climb the highest peak on each continent.

A British embassy spokesman in Beijing could not immediately be reached Thursday.

Kinloch died three days after a 13-year-old American boy, Jordan Romero, became the youngest person to reach the top of Mount Everest. Romero also climbed the Chinese side of the mountain.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19445

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Chepangs unable to cremate mushroom victims for lack of hands

CHITWAN, June 1: People of remote Kanda village in Lothar-9 buried the bodies instead of cremating them to help rescue the seriously ill as the death toll due to toxic mushrooms reached five with additional two deaths on Tuesday.

Eight out of the 11 members in the family of Baburam Chepang, 65, had consumed wild mushrooms for dinner Friday evening and fallen ill. Baburam, his wife Moti Maya, 60, and their three and half years old granddaughter Aita Maya died in the village on Monday while Baburam´s daughter-in-law Manju Maya, 17, and his granddaughter Mangali Maya breathed their last at the Bharatpur Hospital on Tuesday.

Mangali Maya passed away immediately after being brought to the hospital Tuesday morning while Manju Maya died at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in the afternoon. Baburam´s two sons -- Purna Bahadur, 23, and Jeet Bahadur, 20 -- were brought to Bharatpur Monday by villagers after being carried for 21 hours.

Dr Bijaya Poudel who is involved in the treatment said the two more deaths were due to delay in bringing the sick to the hospital. "Had they been brought at the stage of diarrhea, we could have saved them. But the toxins affected their livers and they died of liver failure," Dr Poudel said.

The remaining three are undergoing treatment at the hospital with Baburam´s daughter Geeta Maya in a critical condition at the ICU. The two brothers are in a stable condition.

Chepangs usually cremate the bodies of their dead but this time they buried them in lack of men. There are three households near Baburam´s house and they couldn´t cremate the bodies due to pressure of carrying the sick to Bharatpur.

"The condition of others became serious so we carried them toward Bharatpur asking the remaining persons in the village to handle the bodies in whatever way they can," Garba Singh Chepang, a neighbor, said at the hospital.

Garba Singh said other houses in the predominantly Chepang village are across the hills making it difficult for people to gather.

"Seven persons had left (with the two sons) on Sunday, five more had to leave Monday. The village has become almost devoid of adult men," said teacher at Kandeshwari Primary School near Kanda village, Bal Krishna Thapaliya.

Two more persons died even as the locals turned their attention toward the patients instead of going about cremating who had already died. "The family had at first tried faith healing and it was hard to convince them to go for medical treatment," Thapaliya added.

"I had called the in-charge of the sub health post at Deuralitar Ram Mani Silwal Saturday and he suggested to me to take them to Bharatpur as he only had medicines for nausea which would not work after 24 hours of the initiation of the problem," Thapaliya revealed the reason of taking the patients to Bharatpur.

Granddaughter Aita Maya was the first to die Friday night, Baburam´s wife passed away Saturday while Baburam breathed his last on Sunday night.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19379

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

When once in Nepal isn't enough


Whether you never leave Thamel, spend weeks in the mountains, or go from one adventure sport to the next, for most tourists, there’s something unique about Nepal. With Nepal Tourism Year 2011 just six months away, tourists aren’t only being encouraged to come here, but to make a return visit.

With the highest rate of return visitors in South Asia, the tourism slogan “Naturally Nepal, Once is not Enough” is a fitting one. But photos of mountains and trekkers are no longer enough to represent a diverse and culturally dynamic country such as Nepal, and both locals and foreigners agree.

Darshan Shrestha from The Last Resort agrees, and says most people come to Nepal more than once because they have already trekked and want to try something different.
“This is the best place in the world to do whitewater rafting” he says. “In the marketing campaigns overseas, we have only mountains. We have so much more in Nepal.”

He encourages tourists to go beyond the usual destinations of Kathmandu, Chitwan, and Pokhara and see the real Nepal, and he thinks this sort of tourism needs to be promoted more internationally.

“Putting tourism banners outside the airport doesn’t help. The tourists are already here. You have to go beyond that,” he says, and attract them before they get here.

Alan Curr from the UK is currently on his fourth visit to Nepal and decided to come back and work for a local travel company.

“Every time I’ve been here, I stay a little longer” he says. “I have a massive desire to help the Nepali people. They are very friendly and incredibly honest.”

But despite his numerous visits, Alan has trekked only twice, one of which was to the Everest Base Camp for a charity cricket match.

“Nepal has so much to offer other than trekking, but no one outside of Nepal knows about it,” he says. With an international promotion of its adventure sports “Nepal could become the New Zealand of Asia.”

With people increasingly looking at having one-of-a-kind experience, Alan thinks that events such as the Everest Marathon could bring more international visitors to the country.
“Nothing quite prepares you for Nepal. You don’t get much more different from home than this,” he says.

For Suzanne O’Leary from the UK, it was the Nepali culture, people and religions that encouraged her to return to Nepal for five months this year to continue her volunteering in an orphanage.

“When I left last year, I knew that I would come back. I really felt like I had made a bit of a home here,” she says. Nepal is “so diverse ethnically, so underdeveloped, it’s where my time could quite well be spent as a volunteer.”

Although Suzanne has never trekked, she has traveled throughout the country and immersed herself in the community by living with a host family.

“I really came for the cultural experience, and I’ll come back for the same, ” she says.

While she has never seen any Nepali tourism advertisements in the UK, she feels that promoting Nepal overseas would be hugely beneficial for people wanting an adventurous holiday here.

According to Lonely Planet, “one journey through this land is rarely enough. The first thing many people do after a visit is start to plan the next one.”

This is a view Nepali hotels and tour companies are hoping will dominate tourism next year. With the goal of attracting one million visitors by the end of next year, Nepal Tourism Year 2011 has plans to use the additional tourism revenue to develop the country, the economy, and help alleviate poverty.

For many Nepalis, therefore, the year 2011 is a major opportunity for growth, not only in traditional tourist areas, but across Nepal as a whole.

Source: http://theweek.myrepublica.com/details.php?news_id=19204

CIAA blocks minister's bid to dole out Rs 100m

KATHMANDU, June 1: The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) on Monday foiled a minister´s attempt to dole out millions of rupees to different persons in the name of financial assistance for medical treatment.

Suspecting possible misappropriation, the anti-graft body directed the government authorities not to release any amount as sought by Health Minister Umakanta Chaudhary who had submitted a proposal to the cabinet, seeking release of nearly Rs 100 million under financial assistance heading.

In two letters sent to Chief Secretary Madhav Ghimire and Finance Secretary Rameshwore Khanal, the CIAA directed the government officials not to dole out financial assistance under the minister´s direct proposal.

The CIAA also directed the authorities to immediately develop policy directive and clarify provisions on financial assistance for medical treatment.

The anti-graft body also drew attention of senior government officials not to dole out any assistance for medical treatment costs without introducing and approving such directive.

"The policy directive should be introduced with the provisions that make mandatory to pay treatment costs directly to the government hospitals but not to the individuals which is the practice so far," reads the CIAA directive.

The CIAA directed Ghimire to play crucial role to immediately initiate process for introducing policy directive to make the financial assistance transparent and effective. It directed Khanal to release the amounts under such headings only after the policy directive is approved.

CIAA spokesperson Ishwari Poudel said they directed the authorities to make clear provisions in the directive on the kind of diseases for which financial assistance can be provided.

"No minister get such amounts released through his direct orders," he added. He said the CIAA intervened as minister Chaudhary wanted the amounts released through his direct proposal.

According to a source, Chaudhary had submitted a direct proposal to the cabinet seeking immediate release of the amount in financial assistance for his near and dear ones.

Chaudhary could not be contacted for comments. The Health Ministry is mandated to recommend names for financial assistance for treatment of serious diseases. Those suffering from serious diseases like cancer and renal failure are entitled to get financial assistance from the state coffers.

Source: http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=19340

More people refuse Republic Day honour

Tuesday, 01 June 2010 08:35

At least four more persons including former Speaker of the erstwhile House of Representatives Daman Nath Dhungana have refused the honours conferred on them by the government on the occasion of Republic Day.

They refused the honours saying the process followed in choosing the persons for the honours had undermined the sentiments of the 2006 people’s movement.

Dhungana, human rights activists Padhma Ratna Tuladhar and Subodh Raj Pyakuryal and Dr Bharat Pradhan wrote a letter to Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal Monday expressing dissatisfaction over the government decision to award those who had suppressed the people’s movement.

Various lawmakers also criticised the government honours accusing the government of humiliating the Martyrs by awarding suppressors of the people’s movement. They have demanded the government revoke the awards.

Deputy Prime Minister and foreign minister Sujata Koirala, the daughter of former Prime Minister late Girija Prasad Koirala, has also announced to refuse the honour conferred to her father saying the honour was awarded without consulting her.

She also said, she was absent during the cabinet meeting which made the recommendations of the honour and accused her own government of trying to politicise the awards.

Meanwhile, a government official has said, five justices were awarded on the recommendation of the National Dalit Commission (NDC) and Election Commission (EC). Conceding not to consult the Judicial Council while awarding sitting judges was a mistake, a home ministry official said, they were awarded on the recommendation of the NDC and EC.

Chief Justice Ram Prasad Shrestha had written to the government expressing dissatisfaction for not consulting him while awarding the judges.

Source: http://www.nepalnews.com/main/index.php/news-archive/19-general/6462-more-people-refuse-republic-day-honour-.html