KATHMANDU, Sept 30: In the run-up to the election, government employees have been transferred haphazardly. Since the election code of conduct has come into effect from Wednesday, a joint secretary has been transferred to the Ministry of Urban Development, keeping the date of Tuesday. Some employees have been transferred the day after their first attendance.
In the third week of August, Suman Mishra, the project manager of the Phidim New Town Project under the Ministry of Urban Development, was transferred to Urban Development and Building Construction Project, Nepalgunj. He stayed in Nepalgunj for two days only.
A day after reporting to the Nepalgunj office, Mishra was transferred to Urban Development and Building Construction Project, Dang. He appeared in Dang’s office on August 25. Meanwhile, Khadga Chaudhary working in Dang was transferred to the Urban Development and Building Construction Project, Nepalgunj. Sources say that Mishra was transferred from Nepalgunj under the direction of Minister for Urban Development, Metmani Chaudhary.
Likewise, Dilip Bhandari, the member secretary of the High Powered Committee for Integrated Development of the Bagmati Civilization under the Ministry of Urban Development and head of the Bagmati Improvement Project, has been brought to the ministry within a month. Bhandari has been replaced by Subash Basnet.
Bhandari is a joint secretary, but employees like joint secretaries have been pulled into the ministry and employees like under secretaries have been given permanent positions in the project. Bagmati Improvement Project has been running for some years with the help of the Asian Development Bank. "Donor agencies don't like it when project heads change frequently," the source said, "But here, rather than the system, project heads are being changed at the behest of ministers."
According to sources, Urban Development Minister Chaudhary himself had put pressure on Bhandari to join the ministry. The Bagmati Development Committee had sacked 46 salaried employees working in the project since mid-July.
The source said, "This matter reached the ministry. Minister Chaudhary pressed Bhandari to reinstate the fired employees, but he replied that he could not keep the fired employees as there was no budget to pay them.” After that, sources said that Minister Chaudhary was dissatisfied with Bhandari.