Finance Minister Janardan Sharma resigns over budget tampering allegations

Finance Minister Janardan Sharma has resigned over allegations of bringing unauthorized persons to the ministry at the time of finalizing the budget to change tax rates.

Speaking in the House of Representatives (HoR) Wednesday afternoon, Sharma has announced resignation to facilitate investigation over the allegations.

Speaker Agni Sapkota earlier formed an 11-strong parliamentary committee to investigate the allegations of budget tampering.

“I welcome, and thank for the probe committee that has been formed on initiation of speaker,” Sharma said. “I also announce resignation from my post to pave the way for this investigation.”

The parliamentary committee includes four lawmakers from the main opposition CPN-UML. Similarly, there will be two members each from Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist Center), and one each from CPN (Unified Socialist), Janata Samajwadi Party and Loktantrik Samajwadi Party.

Minister Sharma is accused of bringing former nayab subba (non gazetted first class employee of the government) Raghunath Ghimire and others to the ministry at the time of finalizing the budget May 28 night to change tax rates.

The accusations gained plausibility after the Finance Ministry, responding to a right to information (RTI) request seeking closed-circuit TV (CCTV) footage of the night before the budget presentation, said that it does not have CCTV footage of more than 13 days.

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Published Date: Wednesday, July 6, 2022, 16:37:00

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