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Rajiv Gurung aka Deepak Manange was released from Dillibazar-based prison on Friday

KATHMANDU, Dec 21: Notorious gangster Rajiv Gurung aka Deepak Manange was released from Dillibazar-based prison on Friday afternoon.

Manange was released from the prison after the Supreme Court’s verdict to release him, according to sources. He had been doing time at Dillibazar-based prison since April 2018.

A squad of police from the Metropolitan Police Range Kathmandu had arrested Manange in last April who was absconding after the Supreme Court ordered to put him in prison for five years for an attempted murder case.

Similarly, the Patan Appellate Court had also upheld the verdict of the Supreme Court.

Manange emerged victorious as an independent candidate to a provincial assembly seat from Manang district in the Provincial elections held in November last year.

As the Nepali Congress Maha Samiti meeting entered its second day, speakers expressed dissatisfaction with the leadership for running the party in a haphazard way and promoting factionalism.

Kathmandu, December 16

As the Nepali Congress Maha Samiti meeting entered its second day, speakers expressed dissatisfaction with the leadership for running the party in a haphazard way and promoting factionalism.

Today’s discussions were focused on the four proposals presented — macroeconomic, political, organisational and internal financial — and 32 speakers presented their views. Statute amendment proposal has not yet been presented in the gathering as leaders are still trying to forge consensus on that.

Speakers complained that the political document only mentioned three tiers of elections were held under NC leadership, but did not speak about the humiliating defeat. They said the leadership should own up the election loss. They were of the view that NC candidates were not defeated by communists, but by fellow Congressmen due to deep-rooted factionalism in the party that was not only limited to the centre, but also spread to district and ward committees.

The inclusion of ‘secularism’ in the political proposal also came under fire. They said the term should be replaced by ‘religious freedom’ represented by one of the four stars in the party flag. Some even said the party should promote ‘Hindu nation’, attributing the party’s defeat in the election to the decision to ditch the idea.

Briefing mediapersons, NC Spokesperson Bishwa Prakash Sharma said the Maha Samiti was a platform where views from sections of society could be presented, and that it was normal to raise the issue of ‘religious freedom’. “Since we are a democratic party, everyone has the right to present their views. However, the final document will be based on consensus,” said Sharma.  Maha Samiti members also criticised the macroeconomic proposal, stating that it failed to come up with original programmes and reassembled the same programmes the party had been advocating historically.

On the organisational proposal, speakers said the party failed to come up with a concrete plan to make the organisation robust and promote youths. “The situation is such that a person who is not even an active member of the party has become a member of Parliament,” said one of the Maha Samiti members speaking today. “This trend will only weaken the party.”Speakers complained that all the proposals presented were ‘directionless’ and were drafted just for the sake of it, according to a Maha Samiti member.

Speakers also blasted the leadership for its failure to play effective role as the main opposition in the Parliament and outside. They said the party’s silence on a host of issues ranging from poor law and order situation to corruption scandals was baffling.

Speakers also criticised the government for its authoritarian style of functioning.

Two Nepalis held with 33 kg gold in Kolkata

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, India, has arrested two Nepalis with 33 kilograms of undeclared gold from West Bengal, which Nepali authorities said could be the precious metal that had disappeared mysteriously.

The DRI said, “On the basis of specific intelligence, its officers intercepted a Maruti Swift VXI car with two occupants — Nepali citizens Rakesh Prasad and Hem Prasad Sharma — at Dankuni Toll Plaza along the Delhi-Kolkata Highway on December 12.” While searching the car, 33 pieces of gold bars weighing one kg each were found. The gold bars were concealed in a false compartment behind the dash board and inside a cavity of the vehicle’s gearbox.

The DRI said the gold bars were of foreign origin. Indian officials also confiscated INR 54,760 from one of them. This seizure has led Nepali authorities to suspect that gold intercepted by the Indian DRI officials could be the consignment of the ‘lost’ gold allegedly smuggled by the racket of Chudamani Upreti aka Gorey.

A special probe panel formed to investigate the March 2 murder of Sanam Shakya and the disappearance of 33 kg smuggled gold has so far been unsuccessful in finding the whereabouts of the ‘lost’ yellow metal. The panel led by Ishwar Raj Paudel, joint secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs, which conducted the investigation for four months and submitted its report on August 1 had failed to delve into the status of the gold. The disappearance of the gold was the main reason for Shakya’s murder.

“There are reasonable grounds to believe that the gold seized by Indian authorities could be the consignment of the 33 kg precious metal that disappeared from Nepal. It cannot be dismissed as mere coincidence,” Joint Secretary Paudel, who is currently working at the Department of Immigration as it director general, told THT.

He reasoned that Rakesh Prasad and Hem Prasad hailed from Sunsari district where Shakya was electrocuted to death by Gorey’s gang. “The district was where the gold smuggled to Nepal from Dubai had disappeared. Indian authorities arrested the duo in West Bengal, where we apprehended Gorey. More so, the 712-page report which we submitted to the government has categorically mentioned the names of Rakesh Prasad and Hem Prasad as suspects among 292 persons, who were at large and needed to be dragged into investigation,” Paudel said.

He also claimed that the gold bars intercepted in India could not be fresh consignment smuggled through Tribhuvan International Airport as the government had already dismantled the organised smuggling racket functioning in collusion with police, immigration officials and airlines employees. “It is impossible for anyone to pass such an amount of gold through TIA at this point because we have already dealt a serious blow to organised racketeers.” he said.

Paudel informed that this issue would be discussed at the home ministry level to ascertain whether the consignment seized by Indian authorities had any connection with the disappeared gold. “The ministry may revive the investigation panel to liaise and coordinate with the Indian authorities to establish the fact and initiate further action,” he said.

Jitgadhi Killa to have biggest Nepali flag and Ujir Singh’s life-size statute

Dec 16: The Jitgadhi Killa (Fort) in Butwal where the Nepali forces had beaten Britain’s East Indian Company’s army is being developed as a tourist spot with the biggest national Nepali flag and installation of Colonel Ujir Singh’s life-size statue.

The Fort currently has a bust-size statue of Colonel Singh facing the northern direction. The installation of the life-size copper’s statue facing to the north is expected to further establish the significance of the Fort.

Singh was the military commander at the Palpa-Butwal axis during the Anglo-Nepalese War of 1814-1816 and had led his force to victory.

The Fort, which acquired the name Jeetgadhi after the Nepali troops triumphing against the British in 1816 AD, is located at the western bank of the Tinau River in Butwal.

Butwal Sub-Metropolitan City’s Mayor Shiva Raj Subedi said that the Jitgadhi is being developed as the symbol of nationality and Butwal’s historic landmark and identity.

A contract agreement has been made with Heaven Construction Pvt Ltd to construct the flag and statue at the cost of Rs 4,452,681 and within two months, according to Mayor Subedi.

The national flag would flutter at the height of 42 feet, informed Engineer Dharmaraj Dhakal.

A total of Rs 5 million was allocated in the last fiscal year for the promotion and conservation of this historic Fort while a master plan has been made and Rs 10 million would be allocated this the current fiscal year 2017/18 for the same, add Mayor Subedi.

Plans were afoot to construct Jitgadhi War Museum, Information Centre and develop Old Butwal (ward no 1) as a site of archeological significance.

Furthermore, the Jitgadhi would be connected to Madi Mukunda Sen and Nuwakot Gadhi.

Rabindra Gopal Kapali, a local, was hopeful that the Jitgadhi Fort, which long has been on the backburner in lack of proper protection and promotion, would be further highlighted with the installation of the Ujir Singh’s life-size statue and the biggest national flag.

Ward no 1’s Chairman Mahendra Legal Shrestha said that the houses built by encroaching the Fort’s land would be removed after providing them the landowners compensation.

The provincial government of Province No 5 has allocated Rs 10.5 million while the federal government Rs 5 million for the development of Jitgadhi. RSS

rime Minister and ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Chair KP Sharma Oli has argued that they (he and another chair of the party Pushpa Kamal Dahal) had performed exemplarily.

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KATHMANDU, Dec 16: Prime Minister and ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Chair KP Sharma Oli has argued that they (he and another chair of the party Pushpa Kamal Dahal) had performed exemplarily.

Speaking in a program organized to merge then CPN (UML) led Progressive Lawyers Association (PLA) and the then CPN (Maoist Centre) led Republic Progressive Lawyers Association here at the party central office Dhumbrabarahi in the capital city on Sunday, Chair Oli added that the dual leadership of the party was indeed a unique practice across the globe. He added that his party was fully democratic as manifested in the chairmanship.

On a different note, he argued that some reactionary forces were waging verbal war against the government and republic system.

Prime Minister Oli further shared that the decision of shifting Nepal Police Training Centre from Maharajgunj to Panauti was taken three decades back, therefore, raising this issue was meaningless.

The rumor that the President and the institution were trying to encroach upon the land of Police Training Centre was not only against the image of the President but also against entire republic system, the PM asserted.

Some forces, as he said, were day-dreaming to hatch conspiracy raising such trivial issues but they would not be successful at any cost. He also ruled out the rumor that freedom of press and public rights were curtailed by the leftist government.

Join hands in making country prosperous: Dahal 

Speaking in the same program another chair and former Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal opined that the law professionals should join hands in the mission of making nation prosperous. He also stressed on harmonious relations among the executive, legislative and judiciary.

The new association was formed under the convenorship of Rudra Nepal and Dinmani Pokharel. The newly formed executive committee is of 45-member.