FINS Bulletin March 1, 2018

Nepal to hold presidential election in March

Nepal will be holding an election to choose the country’s new president on March 13, the Election Commission (EC) said.
The election body set the date for holding the presidential election after the EC officials held separate meetings with political party leaders including Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli on Thursday, according to the EC Spokesman Navaraj Dhakal.
The new president and vice-president should be elected through a voting by Electoral College comprising parliamentarians of the Federal Parliament and Provincial Assemblies a month after the formation of Federal Parliament as per the constitutional provisions.
“There will be a separate election to choose new vice president a week after the presidential election,” EC Spokesman Dhakal said.

Xinhua Feb 23, 2018 

Chinese official says unaware of any talks between China, Baloch militants

Chinese foreign ministry’s spokesperson on Thursday said he has no knowledge of any talks between the Chinese government and Baloch militant in the restive province of Balochistan.

In a reply to a question on the recent reports of talks between the Chinese government and Baloch militants, Geng Shuang told reporters that the Chinese and the Pakistani governments have been working in coordination on security matters regarding the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Pakistan Today Feb 22, 2018


‘It’s not a concentration camp’: Bangladesh defends plan to house Rohingya on island with armed police

Bangladesh is racing to turn an uninhabited and muddy Bay of Bengal island into home for 100,000 Rohingya Muslims who have fled a military crackdown in Myanmar, amid conflicting signals from top Bangladeshi officials about whether the refugees would end up being stranded there.
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said on Monday that putting Rohingya on the low-lying island would be a “temporary arrangement” to ease congestion at the camps in Cox’s Bazar, refuge for nearly 700,000 who have crossed from the north of Myanmar’s Rakhine state since the end of August last year.
However, one of her advisers said that once there, they would only be able to leave the island if they wanted to go back to Myanmar or were selected for asylum by a third country.
“It’s not a concentration camp, but there may be some restrictions. We are not giving them a Bangladeshi passport or ID card,” said Hossain Toufique Imam, adding that the island would have a police encampment with 40-50 armed personnel.

CBC News, Feb 22, 2018

China-friendly veteran politician appointed Nepal’s new PM

Nepal’s president on Thursday appointed veteran communist leader Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli as the country’s new prime minister, over two months after Oli’s communist alliance won by a landslide the country’s first general election under a federal constitution.
President Bidhya Devi Bhandari appointed Oli after the constituents of the alliance — Oli’s Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist) and former premier Prachanda’s Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Center) — officially nominated Oli as their candidate for the post, presidential spokesman Kul Prasad Chudal told Kyodo News.

Nikkei Asia Review, Feb 15, 2018

India, China battle for Bangladesh bourse

India and China have launched rival bids for a large stake in Bangladesh’s stock exchange, officials said Thursday, as the Asian powers jostle for strategic influence in the region.
Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) chief executive Majedur Rahman confirmed India’s National Stock Exchange had offered 15 taka ($0.18) per share during a tender process this month for a 25% stake in the bourse’s 1.8 billion shares.
China’s Shanghai and Shenzen stock exchanges made a joint higher bid of 22 taka ($0.26) per share, or $122 million, and “also offered technical support worth nearly $37 million”, Rahman told

Live Mint, Feb 15, 2018

Naxal camp busted in Sukma district

Security forces busted a naxal camp and recovered a huge cache of explosive materials in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Sukma district, police said today.The camp was located in the hills of Jongeras under Kukanar police station limits.A joint team of District Reserve Guard (DRG) and district force of police carried out the operation last evening, Deputy Inspector General of Police (south Bastar) Sundarraj P told PTI. Kukanar is 450 km from the state capital.Naxals fled the camp when the security forces reached the area, the DIG said.During search, eight bullet-proof jackets looted by naxals from CRPF jawans after ambushes, a huge quantity of detonators and gelatin rods, cordex wire, batteries, five steel tiffins of various sizes used to make explosive devices and Maoist uniforms were seized from the camp, he said.

Business Standard, Feb 15, 2018

30,000 detonators seized in Naxal affected Balaghat

The Balaghat police have seized 30,000 detonators being carried in a pick-up van in Balaghat while going on the Malajkhand-Birsa road toward Chhattisgarh.
Balaghat, situated some 450 km east of Bhopal on the Madhya Pradesh-Chhattisgarh border is the only naxal affected district of Madhya Pradesh, raising fears about its possible destination. Balaghat SP Amit Sanghi said that the detonators were supposed to go from Vardha in Maharashtra to mines in Odisha and Bihar, but the vehicle driver Ramnaresh Shukla resident of Shahdol district of Madhya Pradesh and helper Krishna of Garha Vardha and another person, somehow managed to travel 250 km off route and reach the Balaghat border where it was seized. “All of them are being questioned. Going off route for such a long distance is very surprising,” the SP said. 
At present, a case for violating permit norms and under Explosives Act has been registered.

Hindustan Times, Feb 15, 2018

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