Chudamani Sharma goes 'out of contact'

Published On: January 27, 2018 07:17 AM NPT

CIAA accuses Sharma of amassing Rs 40 million illegally Investigation into remaining tax evasion cases begins

KATMANDU, Jan 26: Chudamani Sharma, the suspended director general of the Inland Revenue Department, has gone out of contact at a time when the Commission for  Investigation of Abuse of Authority is preparing to drag him to  court on the charge of illegally accumulating properties worth Rs 40 million. 

The anti-graft body, which has already issued an arrest warrant against him, is preparing to lodge a corruption case against him next week.

"We have asked him to appear before the CIAA to record his statement. He did appear but disappeared before the completion of the statement recording process," said CIAA Spokesperson Padam Prasad Pandey, adding, "For us he is now an absconding individual. But we will present him before the court within a couple of days." 

Spokesperson Pandey said police failed to produce him before the anti-graft body despite raiding suspected areas where Sharma could hide.  A board meeting of the anti-graft body has already decided to file the case against Sharma. 

An official privy to the investigation informed Republica that Sharma has been accused of accumulating properties worth 40 million illegally. 

Sharma has gone out of contact to avoid police custody, CIAA officials said. 

In mid-July last year, CIAA had filed a corruption case against Sharma, and two other officials of the Tax Settlement Commission - the commission's chief Lumdhwaj Mahat and member Umesh Prasad Dhakal-accusing them of embezzling Rs 10.02 billion while settling taxes of 45 companies. 

Out of total 1,069 files, the anti-graft body has investigated 45 before putting corruption-accused Sharma in custody. He was asked to post Rs. 3 billion in bail for his release. 

But Sharma moved the Supreme Court, which later ordered the police administration to release him on bail. 

His tax misuse related case is under consideration at the Supreme Court. 

Sharma who has been accused of the largest corruption scandal ever in Nepal's history was under investigation for possessing properties amassed through illegal means. 

"Investigation into his involvement in helping the remaining business firm to evade tax is also underway. We plan to complete studying the tax evasion cases in phases," said Spokesperson Sharma.

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