Nepal to table constitution amendment bill soon

Wednesday 26th October 2016 05:53 EDT

KATHMANDU: Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal said the government's top priority remains to hold three elections, including the local body election that would be held by mid April to strengthen democracy in the country. The PM also added that draft of the constitutional amendment proposal was almost ready and the government is working to forge consensus among major parties and agitating forces before tabling it in the Parliament. "The draft of the constitution amendment proposal is in the final stage," the PM said recently. Rajendra Mahto, chairman of Sadbhawna Party and senior leader of UDMF, said the PM had assured him to table the proposal before Chhath festival. Dahal admitted that dialogues held among the major parties so far were not so much fruitful.

Saudi executes prince for killing fellow royal

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia executed Prince Turki bin Saud al-Kabir, after he was sentenced to death for reportedly shooting dead his fellow countryman Adel al-Mahemid during a brawl. While the method of execution remains unknown, it is said the prince pleaded guilty to the crime conducted three years ago. When al-Kabir realised the victim was a colleague, he informed the police. The deceased's family was offered financial compensation in exchange for not demanding a death row, however, they refused. Saudi Interior Ministry issued a statement saying, "The government... is keen to keep order, stabilise security, and bring about justice through implementing the rules prescribed by Allah." Executions of members of the House of Saud are rare. But, the country hosts strict legal code, which means murder, rape, armed robbery, drug trafficking, and apostasy, can all receive death sentence. Saudi executed at least 158 people last year, as per Amnesty International.

Head of terror group behind Dhaka cafe attack dead

DHAKA: Chief of a radical Islamist group accused for carrying out the gut-wrenching attack on a popular cafe in Dhaka this july, was killed during a police raid as announced by Bangladesh's elite security force. Rapid Action Battalion has confirmed that Abdur Rahman, chief of Neo-Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh, is dead. Rahman died earlier this month, after falling from a five-storeyed building while attempting to get away from a police raid. His identity was confirmed by his family who were shown pictures of his body. Officials said the Neo-JMB has now been reduced to mere 21 operatives after security forces launched a massive crackdown against the group after the attack. The deadly strike on Dhaka's Holey Artisan bakery claimed the lives of nine Italians, Seven Japanese, an American, an Indian, and five Bangladeshis, including two police officers.

Nepal anti-graft chief impeached

KATHMANDU: A motion for impeachment against chief of Nepal's anti-graft constitutional body was signed by 157 members of the Parliament. The motion was tabled four days after he was suspended amid accusations by lawmakers that he abused his position. Lokman Singh Karki, who headed the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority, since 2013, remained a controversial figure from the beginning as he himself had been the subject of graft inquiries, but remained unconvicted. In a meeting of the House, Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar said the discussion on the motion would commence next week, and the impeachment motion would be sent to the Impeachment Recommendation Committee. Registered by 157 lawmakers from the main opposition CPN-UML and the ruling CPN (Maoist Centre), PM Prachanda urged for a logical conclusion of the issue. The motion states that Karki "seriously violated the constitution and laws and has not sincerely performed the duties of his position."

Desperate Pak. family awaits US visa for 6-year-old girl

COLOMBO: A Pakistani family waiting for a US visa for their ill daughter runs out of time. Six year old Maria suffers from a rare genetic disease that has left her body frail and stunted her growth. In no time, she will be lose her ability to walk as her vertebrae compresses her spinal cord. Coming to their aid, a US hospital offered to perform a surgery on the girl for free, however, the American Embassy in Islamabad has twice refused to approve family visas to the country. Shahid Ullah, Maria's father, said he was told it will "take time" when he applied for a visa. The surgery has been scheduled for November 2. "If we delay Maria's surgery, there will be too many problems," said Ullah, who runs a small store in Rawalpindi. While US Embassy spokeswoman Fleur S Cowan declined to comment on the case, citing privacy laws, she said she would look into the matter.

Sheikh Hasina re-elected Awami League president

DHAKA: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been re-elected president of the ruling Awami League party for the eighth consecutive time. In its 20th Council that concluded on Sunday, the party also elected a new general secretary, Obaidul Quader, who replaced party stalwart Syed Ashraful Islam. Hasina was first made Awami League chief in 1981, after which she returned home. She was in exile in India for six years, after the assassination of Bangladesh's founding father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1975. Councillors of the party unanimously elected her as no other candidated competed for the top post.

Imran calls Sharif responsible if third-force steps in

ISLAMABAD: Opposition leader Imran Khan has warned that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will be responsible if a "third-force" steps in owing to his party's lockdown of the Capital, demanding his resignation. Chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Imran said, "One person will be responsible if democracy is derailed." While he did not mention which force or institution would derail the democracy, he sought to clarify that, "We (PTI) are not doing this to bring in a third force." The 64 year old added, "In a democratic country, the prime minister is accountable to the people, however, Nawaz only wants to save his wealth." A protest was initiated demanding Sharif's resignation after his name appeared in the Panama Papers leak. He added that while the Supreme Court may sentence the PM, his party was only demanding his resignation for a fair investigation.

Indian-American allegedly asked ally to kill a Jew

NEW JERSEY: Indian-American, Aakash Dalal, who currently faces a trial for firebombing five synagogues in New Jersey, allegedly told his co-conspirator Anthony Graziano to gut a Jewish temple. A series of AOL instant messages revealed in the court showed Dalal telling Graziano, "I don't trust you until you kill a Jew." Dalal has been charged with 20 felony counts of terrorism, bias intimidation, aggravatad arson, and conspiracy to commit arson, among other offenses. A series of text messages exchanged between the two accused shows Dalal prompting the other to do "more damage". When Graziano asked him how much damage would be acceptable, he replies, "A total guttage." His father Adarsh Dalal said his son was wrongly accused and that he had no animosity towards the community.

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