Maoists get back five ministries in Nepal

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Kathmandu, Dec 31: Nepal Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala has appointed Maoist leaders as ministers to the five portfolios that the former rebels had held before they quit the interim cabinet on September 18.

According to the Nepal PM office, Mr Koirala yesterday appointed Krishna Bahadur Mahara as Minister for Information and Communications, Dev Gurung, Minister for Local Development, Hishila Yami, Minister for Physical Planning and Works, Matrika Prasad Yadav, Minister for Forest and Soil Conservation and Pampha Bhusal as Minister for Women, Children and Social Welfare. Except for Mr Bhusal, other four Maoist ministers got the same ministries they were in charge of before they quit, The Himalayan Times reported.

Mr Bhusal replaces Khadga Bahadur Bishwokarma. All five would be sworn in today. Maoists decided to rejoin the government following a 23-point agreement among the partners of the seven-party alliance on December 23.

Mr Koirala promoted the Minister of State for Water Resources Gyanendra Bahadur Karki and the Minister of State for Labour and Transport Management Rame-sh Lekhak to cabinet ministers.

A cabinet meeting held yesterday at the PM's residence decided to nominate Durgesh Man Singh as Nepalese ambassador to India, revoking its earlier decision to appoint NC leader Shailaja Acharya to the same post.Minister for Agriculture and Cooperatives Chhabilal Biswokarma said the cabinet decided to withdraw Ms Shailaja's name from the post citing her 'fragile health.' Mr Singh had served as ambassador and resident representative to European Union in Brussels from 1992 to 1997.


UNI

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