Seven LRO staffers, two others charged with graft

Kathmandu, December 26

The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority today filed a graft case against nine persons, including land revenue officers Keshav Prasad Neupane and Rajendra Prasad Phuyal of Land Revenue Office, Dillibazaar, at the Special Court.

Other persons facing corruption charge are Laxman Prasad Bhattarai (Dillibazaar LRO nayab subba), Bijay Bhakta Shrestha (Dillibazaar LRO kharidar), Agni Ghimire (land revenue officer of LRO, Damak, Jhapa), Dilliram Koirala (nayab subba, LRO, Damak, Jhapa), Jayandra Raj Khadka (LRO, Damak, Jhapa), Faudraj Limbu and Chandra Prasad Khanal (advocate) of Morang.

According to the CIAA, Dillibazaar and Damak-based LRO employees had faked land ownership certificate of Tek Maya Anghang (Maohang) and transferred her two parcels of land spreading an area of 0-15-12 and 1-4-12.75 located in Damak in the name of Faudraj. LRO Damak submitted the records of land to its Dillibazaar counterpart, which approved the deed of registration overstepping its jurisdiction.

The LRO employees in collusion with Faudraj and advocate Chandra Prasad were found to have obliterated the name of Tek Maya from register to maintain Faudraj’s name in her place after forging land ownership certificate. The anti-graft body launched an investigation into the case after Tek Maya lodged a complaint along with photocopies of her original land ownership certificate, seeking retrieval of the lands.

The CIAA has claimed a principal of Rs 12 million each from Faudraj and advocate Chandra Prasad. However, the amount in question was not known in the case of seven LRO staffers, it said.

CIAA said it indicted seven LRO employees in accordance with sub-section (1) of section 8 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 2002 and sought maximum punishment against them accordingly, while Faudraj and advocate Chandra Prasad were charged under sub-section (4) of section 8 of the same act.

As per to section 8 of the act, whoever, being a public servant, commits any offence with the malafide intention of getting illegal benefits for himself or herself or for any other person causing loss to the government or public institution, shall be liable to an imprisonment for a term from three months to three years depending on the degree of offence, and in case the amount involving the offence is known, such amount shall be confiscated with the amount in question.