PAC grills Home Ministry officials on NID project

- Post Report, Kathmandu
The House panel asks the Home Ministry about possible conflict of interest and issue of data security if Morpho Safran is selected

Jan 13, 2016-The Parliamentary Account Committee on Tuesday directed the Ministry of Home Affairs to provide details on some questions raised by the panel on the national identity card project.

The panel headed by Nepali Congress lawmaker Ram Hari Khatiwada summoned Home Secretary Narayan Gopal Malegu, chief of NID Project Dinesh Bhattarai and former PMO Secretary Dipendra Nath Sharma, who oversaw the project before he was transferred to Ministry of Urban Development, to seek information on the latest status of the project.

The PAC has formed a panel headed by Khatiwada to probe complaints lodged at the committee and submit a report within a month.

Khatiwada said that Home Ministry officials made a presentation about the status of the NID project but failed to answer some questions raised by the panel.

The NID Office, through the global tender, had received six bids and after having technical evaluation, it decided to pick Morpho Safran, a French security printing company that is also working in India, as eligible one and recommended the Asian Development Bank for concurrence.

The ADB has provided financial support worth US $ 8 million to prepare national identity cards in the first phase.

Besides seeking clarification about alleged manipulation at technical evaluation, the PAC has asked the Home Ministry about the possible conflict of interest in the project and data security if Morhpo Safran is selected for the project. Lawmakers also expressed concerns over price of the NID card that may cost over US $ 40 per card.

Published: 13-01-2016 09:05

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