10 January, Pokhara. Ved Bahadur Gurung ‘Shyam’, who won the election from another area of Kaski-1, was not even expected to become a minister, before that the Chief Minister of Gandaki province Khagraj Adhikari had completed the cabinet.
The UML MPs did not expect that Khagraj, elected from Kaski-1(1), would elect Shyam as a minister from the Provincial Assembly 2.
Ved Bahadur’s name was announced only after the ministers and ministries were finalized and the letter was sent to the office of the provincial head for oath. After returning from Kathmandu on Tuesday, till the minister’s name was decided, Khagraj had to decide on the names of Ganeshman Gurung and Ved Bahadur, who returned to the UML from the Janata Samajwadi Party.
Khagraj chose Ved Bahadur who was supporting him in politics and patronage. Khagraj decided that it would be more convenient for Ved Bahadur, who became provincial MP after becoming the president of Madi rural municipality.
A UML MP said, “Other dignitaries were in the running to become ministers, but many dignitaries were surprised when Khagraj chose ‘right hand’ Ved Bahadur, who had not exercised.” Ved Bahadur got the Ministry of Agriculture and Energy.
UML Politburo member Leela Bahadur Thapa of Baglung, Bhim Karki of Kaski, Central leader Padma GC of Nawalpur, Bhakta Kunwar of Parvat, Mitralal Basyal tried to become ministers, but Ved Bahadur was overtaken.
Another interesting sight was witnessed during the closing of the cabinet. Roshan Gahmagar of Navalpur, who was made chief whip, reached the residence of the state president by pretending to be the finance minister, a day before Khagraj took the vote of confidence by winning the UML for the second time in the state.
He was told to take oath as a minister at 5 o’clock, so he was late. At the same time, another information came to the fore, ‘The minister was exchanged on the way. Roshan, who went to take oath as Finance Minister, will be Home Minister and Law and Finance Minister Sita Sudas.
When Sita Khagraj, who was made departmental minister on the same day as chief minister, was handed over the keys to finance, Roshan Gaha was once again telling her that the finance ministry would come to her. UML leaders say that it would be easier for Khagraj to make Sita the finance minister than Roshan, who did not get a chance to become the finance minister when Prithvisubba Gurung was the chief minister, so the ministry was changed along the way.
Khagraj, who reduced the number of ministries from 12 to 7, was able to arrange distribution and choose ministers within the UML. Khagraj, who decided to assign budgets and roles to all ministries, has put together an interesting cabinet that is convenient for him.
Sita, who earlier headed the district coordination committee Saengja and became the president of its national federation, will be in third place. Sundas, who came into politics from student politics, has won the election from Siangja 1(1).
There is another interesting story of him getting the ticket. UML leaders say that Meenprasad Gurung, who was already a member of the state assembly, contested Sita’s election only after he was denied a ticket. Sundas, given only after giving up the ticket of the other party, has not only become an MP, Khagraj has been entrusted with important ministries. Sita, who was initially made the spokesperson of the government by Khagraj, jumped into politics when the situation was in her favor.
Khagraj Roshan wanted to stop Prithvi Subbanikat Roshan by making him Chief Whip, but when he had to make himself a minister, he chose the easy way out. Gaha, who is also a member of the Constituent Assembly, said it was only during the swearing-in ceremony that he came to know that he had been given the post of Home Minister without receiving any money.
Hari Bahadur Chuman, who was claiming to be the Chief Minister, was made a minister by Chief Minister Khagraj on 25th. Chuman, who became the home affairs and law minister in the Prithvisubba-led government, has been given the physical infrastructure ministry by Khagraj. To avoid the risk of giving the finance ministry to another party, he chose Sita instead of Chuman.
Chuman’s place will be after Khagraj. Chuman, who is also a central member of the Maoists, has been given the responsibility of the Development Ministry.
Resham Jugjali, another MP from the Maoist side, held the portfolios of Industries, Tourism, Forests and Environment. Jugjali, who headed the Maoists in a five-party alliance, switched the House of Representatives from the Congress and left behind the old aspirants to take over the reins of tourism. Jugjali, who was defeated as Malika Rural Municipality President in the local elections held last May, has created history by becoming a state minister.
In Bhagbanda, UML got 4 including the Chief Minister, Maoist got 2 and RPP got 1 seat. In this election, 2 people of RPP got proportional MP from Gandaki. Khagraj inducted RPP parliamentary party leader Pancharam Tamu, who is also a businessman, as a minister on 25 January.
Pancharam has taken charge of the Ministry of Social Development and Health. Pancharam, who became a minister from RPP, who talked about ending federalism, has become an important social development and health minister of the state in this system.
The Khagraj-led government initially won sympathy by reducing ministries. The Khagraj government has become the government in the midst of the challenge of justifying the state with its chosen 7 chariots. With the completion of the cabinet, the real test of Khagraj, who was the health and home minister in the union, has begun.
Khagraj appointed a Dalit and a woman Member of Parliament while 2 members are from Khasaria community including himself. Four ministers from the tribal community have been appointed in Gandaki’s cabinet. Kaski, who did not get a single minister in the government led by former Chief Minister Prithvisubba, who is also the Deputy General Secretary of UML, got 2 ministries including the Chief Minister from RP and UML.
Expressing objection to the allegation of making MPs of his own area ministers, Khagraj has given completeness to the Council of Ministers by including inclusiveness and geography. There are 11 districts, Siangja, Tanhun, Nawalpur, Mayagdi have got one ministry each.
The UML, which won 22 MPs, got the chief minister and deputy speaker in Gandaki, while the Maoists, which won 8 MPs, got the speaker and two ministers. The Nepali Congress, which dreamed of forming a government by winning 27 members after changing the equation of power at the Centre, has now reached a situation where the opposition is questioning it.