Home Minister threatens non-performing contractors with action

Published On: July 24, 2019 06:00 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, July 24: Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa on Tuesday said that the government was preparing to take action against 1,848 contractors for failing to meet the deadline in various construction projects.

Addressing the media during a press conference organized at the ministry, Thapa said that the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority was gathering evidence against the contractors in question.

“The government is committed to punishing the contractors who have failed to deliver the projects on time,'' Thapa told media while briefing on works done by his ministry in last one and half year.

Thapa's remarks come at a time when the government is under criticism for failing to take action against the rouge contractor responsible for delaying thousands of projects.

The operation against rogue contractors, transport syndicate and gold smugglers were some of the key works Thapa listed off as major success of his ministry.

There is not enough evidence to substantiate Thapa's claims. Police have not been able to trace the 33 kg gold smuggled from the Tribhuvan International Airport last year. The transport cartels appear stronger than ever after the government-backed off from a campaign to dismantle the syndicate.

In a report unveiled Tuesday, MoHA has described Minister Thapa's tenure as highly successful. The report claims that the ministry under Thapa's command was able to complete 95 percent work.

Other major achievements listed in the report include a crackdown on violent activities, peaceful integration of CK Raut into the political mainstream and prison reforms. The report, while downplaying its failure to nab Nirmala's Panta's killer(s), has claimed significant improvement in law and order situation, and better coordination among security agencies of three tiers of the governments.

“Overall, the ministry has become successful in maintaining law and order,'' said Thapa. He said that the government was able to do so despite challenges from some elements trying to push the country toward conflicts.

Other highlights of the report include formulation and implementation of various laws and policies, the withdrawal of security personnel from VIPs, works in areas of disaster management.

The ministry's claims, however, do not match the reports from the ground where hundreds of flood-affected families are forced to live in makeshift shelters without proper meals due to the delay in relief distribution.

MoHA's progress report is the latest in a series of a report published by the government outlining the success of various ministries. Of late, the government is under increasing pressure from the opposition party, rights activists and members of the civil society for failing to deliver on its poll promises.

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