Commission member alleges majority of panel members was bought

Kathmandu, August 5:

A member of the Rayamajhi Commission, Ram Kumar Shrestha, today accused the majority group in the commission of giving a clean chit to the king and other suppressors of the Jana Andolan II at the behest of power players. “I cannot say who influenced them to give a clean chit to major players, including King Gyanendra,” Shrestha said, adding that the majority group also included the king’s April 24, 2006 address in the commission report with the intention of absolving him.

“I was adamant on my stance that action should be taken against the king, but they even barred me from writing a note of dissent,” he added.

“The commission could have recommended the government to take action against the king on sedition and treason charges because he had acted against the state and the public.”

Shrestha said that the majority group’s recommendation to take action against the king on misuse of state treasury and rights violation is illegal. “Separate Acts cannot be promulgated to punish anyone. Such a move violates the UN charter.”

“My concern is that the report does not treat the high-ranking officials and the low- ranking ones equally.”

Another member of the commission, Ram Prasad Shrestha, who represents the majority group, has claimed that the government’s mandate under the repealed 1990 constitution did not allow them to recommend any specific action against the king. “That is why we recommended the government to take action against him on the charges of misuse of state treasury and human rights violation after promulgating relevant Acts.”

Shrestha, of the majority group, claimed it had no intention to give a clean chit to the king. “The king faces action as per our report because we have indicted him as the chairman of the cabinet.” A rights activist, Krishna Pahadi, said, “The government must take action against the king through a political decision.” “The government used former justice Rayamajhi to give a clean chit to the king.”

Minister for Agriculture Chhabilal Bishwokarma, said the government will hold a discussion to see if there is any ground left to take action against the king.