CIB recommends prosecution of 238 individuals in Lalita Niwas land scamFour former ministers and six former secretaries among those recommended for prosecution by the CIB in the investigative report submitted to the District Attorney’s office on Tuesday.
The Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) of the Nepal Police has recommended that the government prosecute 238 individuals including four former ministers and six former secretaries as defendants in the Lalita Niwas land scam case.
The CIB on Tuesday submitted the investigative report regarding the case to the District Attorney’s office.
The CIB, in the report, has stated that the then administrative and political leadership of the two ministries–Physical Planning and Land Reform–were involved in the illegal transfer of government land in the name of private individuals. As mentioned in the report, the two ministries are responsible for the decision-making processes to make land administration and public construction transparent and corruption-free.
The bureau has recommended charging three former ministers including Bijay Kumar Gachchadar, Dambar Shrestha, Chandra Dev Joshi and state minister Sanjay Sah for organised crime and forgery of government documents in the case in which the ownership of the government land was transferred in the name of individuals. Apart from Shrestha, the CIB has recorded the statement of three other ministers.
Likewise, the names of former chief commissioner of the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority Deep Basnyat, secretaries Chabi Raj Panta, Dinesh Hari Adhikari, Yubaraj Bhusal, Narayan Gopal Malego and Rabindra Man Joshi have also been recommended as defendants.
Likewise, Shobhakant Dhakal, Ram Kumar Subedi and Bhatbhateni Supermarket owner Min Bahadur Gurung have been named as prime suspects in the case.
Attorney Mahesh Prasad Khatri said that the case will be taken ahead after studying the report by Friday. The case should be filed within 60 days.
Former Prime Ministers Baburam Bhattarai and Madhav Kumar Nepal have been named in the report as government witnesses.
The CIB officials on Sunday evening interrogated them on the issue.
The government was forced to record their statements after the Supreme Court on August 6 ordered an investigation into those involved in making decisions related to the transfer of land of Lalita Niwas, Baluwatar in the name of private individuals in addition to those involved in recommending the transfers.
Police have so far arrested more than a dozen and a half people for their alleged involvement in the scam.
Lalita Niwas covers some 300 ropani (around 15 hectares) of land and includes the prime minister’s residence, Nepal Rastra Bank central office and some other residences of key government officials.