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Maoist ministers take oath in Nepal

world Updated: Dec 31, 2007 15:51 IST

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Four Maoist ministers in Nepal were sworn in today, ending a political deadlock that began when the former rebels walked out of the interim government on September 18.

Prime Minister Girja Prasad Koirala administered the oath of office and secrecy to the Maoist ministers at Singha Durbar in the capital.

The four Maoist ministers who rejoined the cabinet yesterday were sworn in but the Minister for Forest and Soil Conservation Matrika Yadav did not take the oath as he was out of the country.

The Prime Minister administered the oath to Krishna Bahadur Mahara as Minister for Information and Communications, Dev Gurung as Minister for Local Development, Hisila Yami as Minister for Physical Planning and Works and Soil Conservation and Pampha Bhusal as the Minister for Women, Children and Social Welfare. Gyanendra Bahadur Karki was also sworn in as cabinet minister.

The Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (CPN-Maoist) and the major parties last week voted for a parliamentary resolution that seeks to abolish the monarchy immediately after April 2008 Constituent Assembly polls.

"Now we will all concentrate on the election," the Prime Minister told mediapersons after the ceremony.

"Our main agenda now will be to make sure elections are held on time," Maoists' deputy leader Baburam Bhattarai said after the function.

The CPN-Maoist had earlier agreed to join the government and vowed to participate in elections after a deal signed between the ruling alliance and the former rebels to declare Nepal a republic through constitutional amendment and to increase the number of seats for proportional voting system for the key assembly polls next year.