FM Sharma Defends Governor 'Suspension' Move
Published On: April 11, 2022 07:30 PM NPT By: Republica | @RepublicaNepal
KATHMANDU, April 11: Amid growing criticisms over his decision to suspend Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) Governor Maha Prasad Adhikari, Finance Minister Janardan Sharma on Monday said that the government took action against Adhikari as per the NRB Act.
Minister Sharma made the claim during a press meet organized at the Ministry of Finance (MoF) in what is seen as his bid to save his face. “In around a month from now, the panel formed to investigate the issue will bring forth the facts,” he said.
Minister Sharma said the government took action against Adhikari after he failed to check excess credit flow to private businesses. “As the monetary policy has set a limit to maintain the loan flow at maximum of 19 percent, it has already crossed 32 percent. Is this under the jurisdiction of NRB or the MoF?” Sharma questioned.
Minister Sharma also said that his decision to allow banks to issue credit rampantly has led to excessive imports. “We have also tried to find out where the excessive loans went. But the ministry has been unable to find out the fact while NRB did not help the government to solve the issue,” he said.
On Friday, the government suspended NRB Governor Adhikari, who has been accused of leaking sensitive information on policies forwarded by the Ministry of Finance. Minister Sharma also alleged that the NRB officials were involved in bargaining to release millions of US dollars from the account of Prithvi Bahadur Shah of Achham.
But during the press meeting on Sunday, Sharma twisted his words saying that Adhikari turned apathetic to help the government solve the current economic problem. According to Sharma, excessive imports caused by huge loan flow led the country to see depleting foreign currency reserves.
The government move to remove NRB governor Adhikari has drawn widespread criticisms. On Sunday, former finance ministers Surendra Pandey, Bishnu Poudel and Yubaraj Khatiwada, said that the coalition government suspended NRB governor Adhikari to cover up the inability and incompetence of Finance Minister Sharma and the present government.
The International Monetary Fund has also started enquiring on the government’s move to remove Adhikari from his position.
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