KATHMANDU, Nov 11: Two leading private sector organizations—Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) and Nepal Chambers of Commerce (NCC)—have denounced the arrest of Dr Roop Jyoti, a noted industrialist, last week over a dispute related to housing business.
Issuing a statement on Sunday, the FNCCI said that its attention has been drawn toward the arrest of Jyoti from the airport while returning home, and his condition under the detention.
While the FNCCI has not mentioned his name in its official statement, the umbrella organization of Nepal's private sector has warned that such highhandedness against industrialists and businesspersons in the country could make an adverse impact on the environment for domestic and foreign investment.
Roop Jyoti is the vice-chairman of the Jyoti Group, a major business group in Nepal that owns Himal Wires Pvt Ltd, Himal Iron and Steel Pvt Ltd, and Jay Spinning Pvt Ltd, among other dozen companies.
“This kind of hasty behavior against a reputed industrialist who has contributed toward developing industrial and business sector in Nepal, creating jobs for thousands of people and paying taxes in huge amounts annually will not bode well to encourage the private sector,” the FNCCI said in the statement, urging all state agencies to treat businesspeople with respect in line with the concept of rule of law.
Earlier on Friday, the NCC had expressed its objection over the arrest of Jyoti.
“The private sector is saddened with the arrest of Jyoti, including his daughter, from the airport while returning to the country from abroad before being convicted, merely on the basis of a complaint,” read the statement of the NCC that called for respectful treatment to industrialists and businessmen while enforcing and ensuring compliance of law.
Meanwhile, a group of businesspersons staged demonstration at Maitighar Mandala in Kathmandu to protest against the arrest of Jyoti. Claiming that he has been arrested to settle a business score, the agitating group led by Udaay Samaj, Asan, demanded his immediate release.
The District Court of Kathmandu had extended the remand of Jyoti and his daughter Suruchi, for five days on Friday. They were arrested Thursday evening at Tribhuvan International Airport while returning from Singapore.
The duo was held for their alleged involvement in a housing scam in the capital, according to police sources.
Jyoti was arrested after the Supreme Court cleared the way for his arrest over a complaint filed by Bikendra Krishna Malla. Malla had complained that he had paid a total of Rs 27.6 million in different installments for a house at Basbari, Budhanilakantha to Landmark Developers Private Limited, a company where Jyoti also owns a stake. Malla claimed that he has not been provided any house. Industrialist Jyoti denies any wrongdoing.