Govt distributing financial assistance, against election code of conduct
KOSH RAJ KOIRALA
KATHMANDU, July 2: In blatant violation of the code of conduct set by Election Commission (EC), the caretaker government led by Baburam Bhattarai is found to have been distributing financial assistance to individuals close to the UCPN (Maoist).
Sources close to Prime Minister´s Office said a cabinet meeting held on June 15 decided to provide Rs 500,000 to four Maoist cadres purportedly for medical treatment.
As per the decision the four will receive the money through the Ministry of Health. Sources said the cabinet decided to provide Rs 200,000 to Nawaraj Budhathoki from Chaukhabang of Rukum. Likewise, Mahesh Kumar Mahara a.k.a. Sudhir from Alitaal of Dadelhdura district, Bam Bahadur Thapa from Babarkot of Dadeldhura, and Amrit Thapa Magar from Chainpur of Chitwan district will receive Rs 100,000 each for medical treatment.
The decision of the Prime Minister´s Office comes against the election code of conduct as CA elections have already been announced for November 22. Clause 12 of the code of conduct, which was issued on June 6, bars the government from providing financial assistance, donation and grant of any sorts to individuals or institutions.
Talking to Republica, Election Commissioner Ayodhi Prasad Yadav, who also heads the code of conduct monitoring committee, said the EC is not aware about the government´s disbursement of financial assistance. "We will take necessary action if we receive complaint" he said.
The caretaker government breaching its jurisdiction has been involved in transferring and promoting security personnel and making appointments in various government offices drawing concerns from political parties outside the government.
Earlier, the EC had directed the government to scrap its decisions to transfer five AIGs and 19 DIGs. The commission also sought clarifications from the Ministry of Information and Communications over its decision to demote Acting General Manager of state-owned Nepal Television Dipak Mani Dhital.
Prime Minister Bhattarai was highly acclaimed from various quarters as he announced various austerity measures including ban on distributing money from state coffers in the name of financial assistance shortly after assuming his office in last August.
But the austerity measures he introduced by riding a Nepal-assembled Mustang Max vehicle proved to be a hollow promise after he decided to form a 49-member cabinet, the largest ever in the history of Nepal, and failed to check corruption in different ministries under his cabinet.