President Bidya Devi Bhandari presented the government’s plans and policies for the year 2077/78 BS to a joint session of the federal parliament yesterday.

The plans and policies mostly focused on strengthening health and social sectors of the country in light of the ongoing pandemic.

Stating that “developing a healthy Nepal is the government’s main policy”, President Bhandari said, “Programmes will be implemented to develop immunity and disease-fighting capacity of the Nepali population.”

Some key points of the government’s ambitious plans are listed below:

  • The government shall make arrangements to set up hospitals with 5-15 beds in each of the 753 local levels, 25 to 50 beds in the 75 districts and at least 200 beds in the 14 zones.
  • The government also aims to set up 500-bed hospitals in each province, upgrade the Pokhara Academy of Health and Sciences, Karnali Academy of Health and Sciences, Koshi Hospital, Narayani Hospital, Bharatpur Hospital, Bheri Hospital and Dadeldhura Hospital to “specialised service hospitals”.
  • A 300-bed infectious disease hospital in Kathmandu and 50-bed ones in all provinces will be established as priority projects.
  • Strengthening the role of government in education and health services while encouraging the private sector for investment programmes.
  • Management of necessary concessions for daily wagers and financially marginalised population affected by the pandemic and lockdown.
  • Additional work-plan will be prepared for post-COVID-19 period and will be implemented region-wise.
  • Domestic travel will be facilitated when situation gets better, and agricultural and industrial development will be taken forward.
  • The government will issue a new national map by including Lipulek, Limpiyadhura and Kalapani as Nepali territories.
  • The government will prioritise research-based education and revamp Tribhuvan University as a centre of academic excellence

Though the plans and policies look promising, the government has yet again failed to specify how it is going to achieve these targets.