Initiate fair probe into charge against Mahara: NC

Kathmandu, October 1

The main opposition Nepali Congress today said rape allegation against Krishna Bahadur Mahara, who quit as speaker today, should be carried out as per the law of the land, and that he should not be provided any concession just because he belonged to the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) or held top post.

Organising a press conference at party headquarters in Sanepa, Lalitpur, NC Spokesperson Bishwa Prakash Sharma said everybody was equal before the law, and that Mahara should face action just like a commoner. “If found guilty, all must face action, whatever post they hold,” said Sharma.

The NC also questioned the language in resignation letter Mahara tendered today, specially the term ‘until investigations are over.’ The resignation letter Mahara submitted to Deputy Speaker Shiva Maya Tumbahamphe read, “I tender my resignation with effective from today on moral grounds, to pave the way for impartial investigation into the allegations leveled against me by questioning my character, until the investigation is over.”

Terming the resignation as ‘incomplete’, the NC said Mahara did not fix certain terms in the resignation letter. The letter read as if he was assigning someone as acting speaker until the investigation was over.

“What if the investigation takes one year? Does this mean the post of the speaker remains vacant for one year?” questioned Sharma.

He said NCP leadership must act responsibly and ensure a ‘polished and detailed’ resignation letter from Mahara. According to Sharma, the fact that Mahara resigned as per the decision and direction of the NCP proved wrong its previous claim that Mahara was no more a party member after his election to the speaker’s post. As per the constitution, speaker and deputy speaker should be from different parties. However, both Mahara and Tumbahamphe belong to the same party, NCP. The ruling party has been arguing all along that they belonged to different parties at the time of their appointment.

Tumbahamphe belonged to the then CPN-UML and Mahara to the CPN-MC, which later merged to become the NCP.