The administration headed by Chairman of the Maoist Center, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, has not yet been able to take full form because of internal conflicts within the Nepali Congress (NC). Because the NC leaders, who had gathered to end the seven-party coalition with the UML, could not agree on the distribution of ministries, the Council of Ministers could not be completed.

In the 10-party coalition, the NC is represented by eight ministries. Despite having four ministers in the administration, the NC was unable to choose the other four ministers and one minister of state owing to a lack of internal agreement. Following the governing coalition parties’ agreement on the distribution of ministries on March 30, NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba sent four of his close associates to the cabinet on March 31. As a result of the Shekhar Koirala group in the party being dissatisfied with the division of ministries, Deuba sent just four of his party’s leaders to the administration.

Two ministers had been set aside for other organizations by President Deuba. The opposing side advocated for the appointment of three ministers and the prior selection of the ministries’ names. Other party leaders did not provide names because they claim that Deuba is not prepared to hand up three ministries and that they would want to nominate the ministries themselves. The other view is that Deuba wants to retain control of four significant ministries, including the Deputy Prime Minister, as well as the independent ministries of foreign affairs and health and population. Koirala faction leader: “We are not in favor of taking the ministries left by the establishment faction and just being a witness in the government. We will not participate in the government until we get three ministries, including health and foreign affairs.”

However, the leaders of the establishment side assert that there is an issue with the cabinet’s growth since they are unable to agree on anybody other than the number and the ministries who should join the government. A politician close to Deuba claims that the issue stems from the fact that Koirala and General Secretary Gagan Kumar Thapa cannot agree on who should be sent to the government. According to the establishment faction, General Secretary Thapa prioritized putting forth the name of central member Pradeep Paudel even though Koirala intended to send Vice President Dhanraj Gurung and Dik Bahadur Limbu to the cabinet.

Under Vice President Purna Bahadur Khadka’s leadership, the Nepali Congress has entered the executive branch of the government. In the current administration, Khadka serves as both the Defense Minister and Deputy Prime Minister. Joint General Secretaries Badri Pandey and Jeevan Pariyar, on the other hand, want to be ministers as well. As none of the general secretaries will serve in the administration, they have been submitting applications for ministerial positions with the justification that they are second in dignity only to Vice President Gurung. Pariyar is a proportionate member and Pandey was elected to the House of Representatives from Bajura.

Currently, Ramesh Rijal is in charge of the Ministry of Industry, Sita Gurung is in charge of the Ministry of Urban Development, Prakash Sharan is in charge of the Ministry of Finance, and NC’s Khadka is the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defense. The Nepali Congress also consists of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Health and Population, Law and Justice, and Youth and Sports. Deuba intends to assign Mohan Bahadur Basnet the position of health ministry and NP Saud (Narayan Prakash Saud) the position of foreign affairs. Deuba is prepared to hand up the last two ministries to the other party faction. Bimalendra Nidhi, Shashank Koirala, Prakashman Singh, Krishna Prasad Sitaula, and others have also been vying for government positions.

The NC is now divided within, therefore Prime Minister Dahal is still in charge of six ministries. The remaining four ministries that belong to the NC and one that belongs to the Janata Samajwadi Party (JSP) have been under Prime Minister Dahal’s scrutiny. Ashok Rai has been assigned to the Ministry of Education by JSP, which has two ministries. After the by-elections on April 23, it is rumored that the party would send a minister to the remaining ministries. After abandoning the water supply ministry, the Janmaat party announced its resignation from the cabinet, claiming that it was denied the industry ministry. The leaders of the UML, Maoist Center, Rastriya Swatantra Party, and Janamat Party participated in the administration under Dahal, who was designated prime minister on December 25. On December 26, they took an oath of office and secrecy.

After reaching an agreement on the distribution of the ministries on January 16, Dahal finalized the cabinet on January 17 by incorporating the Rastriya Prajatantra Party in the administration. When the Supreme Court removed Rabi Lamichhane, the head of the Rastriya Swatantra Party, from all of his posts due to a citizenship dispute, the party severed ties with the Dahal-led administration in the third week of January. On February 25, when the Maoist-led government decided to go forward with parties like the Nepali Congress in the presidential election, the Rastriya Prajatantra Party and the UML severed connections with the Dahal-led administration.

Dahal, who got a vote of confidence from the House of Representatives on March 20, agreed on the distribution of ministries within the new coalition on March 30 in accordance with the terms of Article 100, Clause 2 of the Constitution of Nepal. Dahal extended the cabinet on March 31, but he still hasn’t been able to finish it.

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