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Nepal government revokes army chief Katawal's sacking

By Shirish B Pradhan in Kathmandu
June 19, 2009 11:23 IST
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Nepal's coalition cabinet headed by Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal has scrapped the erstwhile Maoists-led government's controversial decision to remove the army chief Geneeral Rookmangud Katawal. The cabinet in its meeting on Thursday nullified the Maoists-led government's decision to replace the army chief Katawal and appoint Lieutenant General Kul Bahadur Khadka to the post of acting chief, sources close to the cabinet said.

"The government also revoked the May 4 decision of previous government that condemned President Ram Baran Yadav's move to block Army Chief's dismissal," Minister for Information and Communication Shanker Pokharel, who is also government spokesman, said.

Maoist chief and the Prime Minister Prachanda had resigned from his post on May 4 following the President's move to reinstate the sacked army chief. The move also led to blockade of the Parliament proceedings for one month and also sparked an agitation by Maoists across the country. The Maoists-led government had decided to sack Katawal after the army chief rejected its move to merge all 19,000 ideologically indoctrinated Maoist combatants into thenational army.

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Shirish B Pradhan in Kathmandu
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