Nepal’s 11-member election cabinet gets full shape

KATHMANDU: After political consensus and receiving the name of new ministers from major political parties, Chairman of Nepal’s Interim Election Council of Ministers Khil Raj Regmi today administered the oath of office and secrecy to eight newly appointed ministers.

The new ministers were administered the oath in accordance with the Article 38 of the Interim Constitution of Nepal 2007, according to the President’s Office. The current cabinet also got two ministers from Madhesi community but no representative from the Dalit community.

Riddhi Baba Pradhan, the lone woman minister in the incumbent cabinet, was appointed as the Minister for Women, Children and Social Welfare, and Land Reforms and Management while Bidhyadhar Mallik was sworn as Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development, and Health and Population.

Likewise, Madhav Prasad Poudel was given the portfolios of Ministry of General Administration, Information and Communications, and Education while Shankar Prasad Koirala as the Minister for Finance, Industry, And Commerce and Supplies.

Similarly, Chhabiraj Panta was sworn as Minister for Physical Planning, Transport and Urban Development while Madhesi Morcha’s pick Uma Kanta Jha is given the responsibility of Minister for Energy, Science, Technology and Environment, and Irrigation.

Also on the occasion, Tek Bahadur Thapa Gharti was administered as the Minister for Agricultural Development, and Forest and Soil Conservation while Ram Kumar Shrestha is given the portfolios of Minister for Youth and Sports, Peace and Reconstruction, and Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation.

Pradhan and Shrestha are the UCPN (Maoist) nominees while Koirala and Panta bagged the ministerial post from the Nepali Congress quotas. Likewise, Poudel considered close to the CPN (UML).

Earlier, Madhav Prasad Ghimire and Hari Prasad Neupane have already been appointed the ministers.

Talking briefly to media persons after administering the oath of office and secrecy to the newly-appointed ministers at the Rashtrapati Bhawan Chairman of Interim Election Council Regmi said the country has marched ahead to the elections.