Kathmandu, February 19
The Parliamentary Hearing Committee of the Federal Parliament today decided to verify the genuineness of the academic and citizenship certificates of Samim Miya Ansari, who has been proposed as the chairperson of the Muslim Commission by the Constitutional Council.
After hearing complaints lodged against Ansari, the PHC also directed its secretariat to collect the documents – citizenship certificate, educational certificates and party membership – of Ansari from the authorities concerned.
“The PHC has decided to investigate Ansari’s certificates and his party affiliation,” PHC Chair Laxman Lal Karna said after the meeting. According to PHC member Surendra Pandey, who is also the standing committee member of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP), the PHC secretariat has also been asked to write to Kathmandu District Administration Office for Ansari’s citizenship papers, the Constitutional Council for his academic certificates and the Election Commission for Ansari’s status in the NCP.
According to PHC secretariat Under-secretary Keshav Aryal, the secretariat will write to the authorities concerned tomorrow.
During today’s hearing, which was boycotted by the Nepali Congress, Gokul Khatri, who lodged a complaint against Ansari at PHC, claimed that Ansari was a Central Committee member of the NCP as per the EC’s record. The Muslim Commission Act bars members of any political party from heading the constitutional body.
After hearing Khatri’s complaint, PHC members Purna Kumari Subedi, Rajendra Shrestha and Amrita Thapa Magar vowed to investigate the genuineness of Ansari’s certificates and his political status before taking a final decision.
Ansari has submitted his citizenship certificate that he obtained from Kathmandu DAO to the PHC, while he has yet to submit his School Leaving Certificate or Proficiency Level Certificate, according to Karna.
Ansari, a resident of Kathmandu, joined the erstwhile CPN (UML) after quitting Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal prior to local level polls in 2017. He became a Central Committee member of NCP after CPN-UML and CPN-Maoist Centre merged on May 17.
The Constitutional Council headed by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli recommended Ansari’s name as the chairperson of the Muslim Commission on January 20. The commission is formed to protect the rights of the Muslim community.
Proposed chairpersons of the National Natural Resources and Fiscal Commission and the National Inclusion Commission, Balananda Poudel and Shanta Raj Subedi, respectively, presented their work plan in the PHC meeting. No complaint was filed against them.
The next PHC meeting will hear from the proposed chairpersons of the Madhesi Commission and Tharu Commission, Bijay Kumar Datta and Bishnu Prasad Chaudhary, respectively, on Thursday. According to Karna, no complaint has been filed against either of them.
A version of this article appears in print on February 20, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.