Rajbhandari claims RPP owes him Rs40mA property row in the fourth largest Rastriya Prajatantra Party has come to the fore again as the party’s Central Working Committee member Dil Bikash Rajbhandari has accused the leadership of not paying Rs40 million he lent for party office construction and to the party leadership during elections.
A property row in the fourth largest Rastriya Prajatantra Party has come to the fore again as the party’s Central Working Committee member Dil Bikash Rajbhandari has accused the leadership of not paying Rs40 million he lent for party office construction and to the party leadership during elections.
Rajbhandari is an elected CWC member of the united RPP that was formed after a merger between the erstwhile Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal and the RPP in November last year. In a note distributed in the party’s CWC meeting, he has claimed that out of the Rs25.9 million he spent on constructing the party office in Basundhara, the RPP paid him only Rs2.3 million. He also claimed to have paid Rs15.3 million to the leadership during the second Constituent Assembly elections in 2013.
Though party Chairman Kamal Thapa, who then chaired the RPP-N, had reportedly agreed to bear the expenses, Rajbhandari claimed that he was not paid any money in the last four years. Of the Rs15.3 million lent to the party, Rajbhandari claimed to have borrowed Rs5 million from Purusottam Shahi, Rs2.3 million from Kamala Sharma while Rs8 million was his own.
“I gave the money to the party leadership, mostly to Thapa. But now they are reluctant to pay back,” Rajbhandari told the Post. He distributed the note to all the CWC members to mount pressure on Thapa to repay the debt.
The erstwhile RPP-N had constructed its office on 12 annas of land in Basundhara donated by Rajbhandari in memory of his wife Shashi Kala. He claimed there was a ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ in which he would donate the land while the party would fund the construction. “I took the responsibility for construction as the treasurer hoping that the party would pay back the cost,” he said.
The party leaders, however, have a different say. They claim that a number of well-wishers had donated money for the construction and the fund was managed by Rajbhandari himself. “About the payment of Rs15.3 million, can he show the receipt or any proof for that?” questioned an office bearer on condition of anonymity. Rajbhandari has threatened to padlock the office and a court case to recover the dues.
The RPP-N in August, 2014 had sacked Rajbhandari as the CWC member following a dispute over the property. He then joined the dissident group led by the late Padma Sundar Lawoti. He returned to the party after the merger in November. RPP leaders say Rajbhandari was “doing politics” over the property.
RPP undecided on twin issues
The three-day Central Working Committee meeting of the Rastriya Prajatantra Party that concluded on Friday failed to decide its position on joining the government and supporting constitution amendment. The Central Executive Committee has been authorised to take a call on the issues.
Though the CWC meeting concluded that the party should contribute to increasing the acceptability of the constitution by addressing the demands of the protesting parties, it entrusted the CEC with a decision on the matter.
The fourth-largest party in Parliament has demanded four ministerial berths including a deputy prime minister for joining the government. The much smaller Rastriya Loktantrik Forum led by Bijay Kumar Gachhadar has got three ministries with a DPM.
The CWC also has asked the government to have an image of Prithvi Narayan Shah, the unifier of modern Nepal, on currency notes so as to “promote a feeling of national unity”.