HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority claims that its recent diktat to stop the misuse of government vehicles has worked wonders.
On August 6, the constitutional anti-corruption agency had directed authorities to restrict the use of government vehicles on public holidays and during off-duty hours. Since August 6, the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division and its 34 units in the Kathmandu Valley have intensified surveillance against state-owned vehicles to curb their misuse.
A traffic police officer said police personnel, both in civvies and in uniform, have been keeping a tab on government vehicles as per the CIAA directive. “These days, state-owned vehicles rarely ply on holidays and during off-duty hours,” he said. This is a departure from the past, when we used to come across dozens of white-plate vehicles on Valley roads during public holidays, he added.
In the past two weeks, Traffic Police have caught five state-owned vehicles for violation of the CIAA diktat and handed them over to line ministries. Officials, however, refused to divulge the details.
The CIAA had drawn the government’s attention towards growing misuse of government-owned vehicles during public holidays and off-duty hours. It had written to Chief Secretary Leela Mani Paudyal to bar ministries and line agencies from using state-owned vehicles for private use.
MTPD has directed police officers to impound state-owned vehicles found plying on public holidays without passes and hand them over to line ministries for further action. According to the CIAA, government officials, in many cases, use government vehicles for temple visits, picnics, restaurant visits and for taking family members to places during off-duty hours.
For emergency use of government vehicles during public holidays, users must obtain passes from the chief district officer and the secretary at the line ministry.