Pokhara, March 18
Pokhara Metropolitan City has banned the operation of 10 paragliding companies from today for failing to register their business and renew them in Kaski.
Ten paragliding companies were barred from flying for ignoring the repeated calls for registration and renewal.
According to internal auditor Romnath Upadhayay at the Revenue Department of Pokhara Metropolitan City, vehicles belonging to ten companies and pilots were stopped at the entry point of Sarangkot Danda and prevented from reaching the paragliding take-off area.
Upadhyay said his office was compelled to bar ten companies from flying as they had continued providing service without renewing and registering their businesses as per the metropolis’ notice.
Information officer at the metropolis Gangalal Subedi said that 61 companies are affiliated to Nepal Airsports Association. Of them, two companies provide service outside Pokhara.
Of the total companies that fly in Pokhara, 42 paragliding companies have registered and renewed their business.
Issuing a notice, the metropolis had asked paragliding companies to register and renew their business a fortnight ago. Only ten companies had renewed their registration within the first deadline. Since then, the deadline has been extended by one week twice.
The metropolis has decided to bar unregistered paragliding companies from flying and to fine companies that do not renew their registration Rs 5000 per month.
Paragliding companies that have not renewed their registration have not paid the tax for four years.
A paragliding company has to pay an aggregate tax of Rs 86,000.
Gandaki Province government has already decided to collect Rs 100,000 tax from a company per year for their flights.
Nepal Airsports Association Chairperson Yogesh Bhattarai flayed the province government saying it was impractical to impose tax upon tax on the paragliding business.
In the wake of increasing paragliding accidents, Civil Aviation Authority Nepal had banned solo paragliding flights in the country. The ban continues till date.
A version of this article appears in print on March 19, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.