A meeting of Gandaki Province today passed the budget for fiscal year 2021-22.

The budget was passed with majority amid the protest from the main opposition CPN-UML lawmakers. UML lawmakers had behaved aggressively to prevent passage of the budget.

As the Speaker Netranath Adhikari gave time to Chief Minister Krishna Chandra Nepali Pokhrel to present the appropriation bill, lawmakers from the CPN-UML tried to obstruct Pokhrel from presenting the bill. Some UML lawmakers had thrown chairs and tables. As CM Pokhrel moved ahead to present the appropriation bill, UML lawmakers shouted slogans and boycotted the meeting.

The appropriation bill passed the floor of the Gandaki Provincial Assembly with majority. Nepali Congress, CPN-Maoist Centre, Rastriya Janamorcha, and independent lawmaker Rajiv Gurung had voted for the bill and it passed the floor.

CPN-UML lawmakers had submitted a 10-point demand to the chief minister and had tried to obstruct the meeting saying that their demands were not incorporated.

UML lawmakers accused CM Pokhrel of ignoring the good work that the previous UML-led government had done in the province and discriminated against the good plans introduced by the former government.

Meanwhile, the budget of Province 2 for the fiscal year 2021-22 was unanimously passed. The provincial government on June 15 had presented a budget worth over Rs 33.79 billion for the new fiscal year.

The budget includes over Rs 15.63 billion under current expenditure, more than Rs 18.5 billion under capital expenditure and Rs 10 billion under fiscal management.

Chief Minister of the province Lalbabu Raut had tried to seek consensus for the budget among opposition parties, but to no avail.

However, the budget was passed today without holding ministry-wise discussion and giving time for ministers to respond. The budget had to be endorsed before July 15 as the new fiscal 2021-22 begins on the same day.

A version of this article appears in the print on July 15 2021, of The Himalayan Times.