KATHMANDU, Nov 12: The government has nominated constitutional expert and a member of Nepal-India Eminent Persons Group Nilamber Acharya as Nepalese ambassador to India.
A cabinet meeting held on Sunday evening after a long gap owing to the poor health condition of Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli also picked Udaya Raj Pandey as Nepalese envoy to Malaysia and Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Krishna Dhakal as ambassador to the UAE.
The government decided to appoint Acharya as Nepalese envoy to India after its earlier decision to nominate former Chief Election Commissioner Neel Kantha Upreti to the same post drew criticism from a section of the ruling party leaders, who said it is against the spirit of the constitution to appoint office bearers of any constitutional bodies as ambassadors.
Sources said the government is preparing to expedite his appointment process after the EPG report is submitted to prime ministers of both Nepal and India. Acharya, a constitutional expert, had previously served as Nepal’s ambassador to Sri Lanka.
The ambassadorial post in India was lying vacant after the then ambassador Deep Kumar Upadhyay resigned from the post in October 2017 to contest the parliamentary election from Kapilbastu last year. Similarly, the post of ambassador to Malaysia fell vacant after the four-year term of the then ambassador Niranjan Man Singh Basnyat expired in February, 2018.
According to a cabinet minister, the meeting on Sunday also decided to extend the term of Nepal’s ambassador to the Permanent Mission to the UN and Other International Organizations in Geneva Deepak Dhital until a new decision is taken. His four-year term was expiring on Nov 20.
The cabinet meeting decided to forward a bill to help expedite works of national pride projects, bringing all of them under the Prime Minister’s Office. The Prime Minister’s Office will now onward oversee all projects that cost over Rs 25 billion.
The cabinet meeting also decided to forward the Civil Servants Adjustment Bill to the Public Service Commission (PSC) for its consent. According to a cabinet minister, the government will decide whether to introduce the bill through ordinance or through regular process in the parliament after receiving consent from the PSC.
Similarly, the cabinet meeting has appointed Raman Nepal as chief of Citizen Investment Trust. The meeting also promoted Durga Thapa to Additional Inspector General (Technical) of Nepal Police.
However, government spokesperson Gokul Banskota, who is also Minister for Communications and Information Technology, declined to make public any decisions taken by the cabinet. He said that journalists will get to know about the decisions in due course of time.