THT 10 YEARS AGO: Security plan for CA election announced

Kathmandu, January 24, 2008

The government has announced a three-phased special security plan for the Constituent Assembly election, slated for April 10.

The plan will come into force from January 29. Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula briefed the parliamentary Constituent Assembly Monitoring Special Committee on the plan in the afternoon and, unveiled the details later at a press meet at his ministry.

As per plan the government will mobilise some 132,000 security personnel, more than half of them recruited temporarily for a month. The total force includes around 62,000 thousand civil and 22000 armed police, and 69,700 temporary recruits hired 15 days ahead of the Assembly election, he said.

The first phase plan has been scheduled from January 29 to February 19, the second phase from February 20 to April 9 and the third phase begins on April 10 until the political parties contesting the election finish their victory rallies, he said.

The government will not compromise on any threats and challenges in the lead up to the Assembly election, the Home Minister said. “Forces trying to foil the election will be defeated, including those declining to sit for dialogue with the government,” he told the parliamentary committee. He also appealed to all agitating parties to join hands for the polls.

67pc reduction in under-five mortality: Report

Kathmandu, January 24, 2008

Child health in Nepal has shown an impressive progress over the past decade.

Currently, the under-five mortality stands at 59 deaths for every 1,000 live births — a 67 per cent reduction in the last decade, stated UNICEF’s State of the World’s Children 2008 report released today.

Of 194 countries, Nepal ranks 63rd while Sri Lanka is 135th and Maldives is 89th with 13 and 30 under-five deaths per 1,000 live births respectively. Bangladesh ranks 55th with 69 deaths while Bhutan is 54th with 70 deaths. India and Pakistan rank 49th and 42nd with 76 and 97 deaths respectively.

Afghanistan is at the 3rd position with 257 deaths. Gillian Mellsop, UNICEF Nepal representative said, “Nepal is one of the seven countries in the world that has been successful in cutting child mortality by two thirds, and is very much on track in reaching the millennium development target in 2015. What is commendable for Nepal is that we were able to make this progress despite the conflict.” “This dramatic decline was possible due to the high priority given to child survival.

Thousands of children’s lives were saved through a series of measures including routine immunisations, improvement in overall sanitary and hygiene conditions, introduction of the integrated management of childhood illnesses and the introduction of Vitamin A supplementation,” said Mellsop.