CIAA discusses probe in Pathak’s graft case

Kathmandu

Feb 18, 2019-

Senior officials at the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority on Sunday discussed initiating an investigation in the graft case involving Raj Narayan Pathak, who resigned as a commissioner of the anti-graft body on Friday.

Despite video evidence of Pathak admitting to have received Rs7.8 million in bribe, there is a concern whether he would also walk away without being prosecuted like other people who  had committed irregularities as constitutional body post holders in the past.

“We are facing pressure from all quarters to initiate an investigation. We have not reached a conclusion yet due to the lack of clarity in the constitution whether office bearers of a constitutional body can be prosecuted on corruption charges,” a CIAA commissioner said.

Article 239 (3) of the constitution may be interpreted that the commission can initiate action against an office bearer of a constitutional body only when he or she is removed through impeachment, CIAA officials said.

In the past, Lokman Singh Karki, who was disqualified by the Supreme Court questioning his moral integrity, didn’t face any inquiry, though questions were raised about constitutionality and legality of his actions as the CIAA chief.

Former chief justice Gopal Prasad Parajuli was embroiled in a controversy over fake birth and academic  certificates. Supreme Court Justice Deepak Raj Joshi was disqualified by the Parliamentary Hearing Committee to head the judiciary citing his controversial verdicts in the past. None faced any action raising questions whether holding a constitutional body post gives one impunity against their corrupt deeds. (PR)

Published: 18-02-2019 10:33

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