CIAA seeks clarification from NOC officials on land purchase scandal

Kathmandu, January 7

The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) has begun seeking clarifications from officials of Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) on the land purchase scam that the corporation was dragged into a few months back.

Officials of the anti-graft body informed that the probe on NOC land purchase scam has been intensified and the process of seeking clarifications on the issue from NOC officials and members of the NOC board have started from today.

CIAA today had sought clarification on the issue from Director at NOC, Puskar Karki.

“We have already collected related land procurement documents from different agencies involved in the land purchasing process for NOC and clarifications have been sought from more than 200 people involved in the process of acquiring land for NOC, including land owners, land agents, officials of NOC, banks, and officials of rural municipalities, among others. Now we have started seeking clarifications from NOC management,” said Padma Prasad Pandey, spokesperson for CIAA. “The then members of NOC board will be called for clarification on the issue soon.”

CIAA plans to seek clarification from more than 35 high-ranking officials of NOC and its board on the irregularities that have been suspected in the land purchase deal that the corporation had initiated.

Though it has been four months since the CIAA started investigating the possible corruption in the NOC’s land purchase deal, the anti-graft body has yet to finalise the probe report. However, Pandey claimed that more than 60 per cent of works related to the investigation on the issue has been completed so far.

NOC had come under the CIAA scanner for alleged irregularities while buying land in Chitwan, Bhairahawa, Sarlahi and Jhapa, which was meant for the development of petroleum storage infrastructure.