LETTERS: Dubious scheme
Apropos of the news story “Govt’s taxi permit scheme backfires” (THT, July 29, Page 1), this is a well thought of and well-conceived scheme of extremely dubious nature. The whole exercise shows the Nepali mental capacity to blatantly exploit the loopholes in the country’s legal system. The story goes as follows. The government decides to offer taxis to 1,500 quake victims through lottery, which is a noble decision. Then it announces that there would not be any special concessions, tax relief and duty waiver. Fair enough. No monetary assistance would be provided. OK. Then it comes up with an important rider that the lottery winners can operate taxis in their home towns only. Big problem unless the lottery winners could have halted taxis and public transportation from outside the districts coming into theirs. Ownership was apparently non-transferable at the outset.
Suddenly now the ownership can be transferred to people in Kathmandu, citing an important legal loophole that ‘there is no law that prohibits the acquirer of new taxis from transferring the vehicle’s ownership’. Does that mean that the taxis sold by lucky winners from Dolakha can be operated in Kathmandu now? The original owners from other districts cannot ply their prizes in Kathmandu, so how can the new ones do? This is as crooked as it can get. This is a well-planned racket to benefit from the plight of more than 150,000 quake victims. Why couldn’t the scheme have been made non-transferable or transferable to the next victim out of 150,000 from the respective districts only?
Since this was a special one-off lottery to aid the quake victims, why is it subject to the regular laws? Why weren’t the 60-year-old quake victims rejected or discouraged at the time of registration if they were not going to get bank loans? All along, the racketeers were fully in the know of the loopholes and the end result, and had conceived the taxi scam of the nature that only Nepali crooks are capable of. One more reason is that we need a Duterte in this country.
Manohar Shrestha, Kathmandu
I am writing this piece to illustrate the fact that in our country there are several self-proclaimed astrologers and most of whom even publicly declared that they have received a clairvoyance and an odylic force to tell the future of a person. I am quite susceptible for the mounting gullibility that is cementing the tens of thousands of innocent minds. It is true that the government is not acting nor the media is doing any journalistic homework to gain a great deal of headway by curbing this. Ongoing monopolistic and charlatan business is being operated before our own eyes. This kind of business doesn’t make any contribution to the nation by paying tax, nor is it making people wise enough to reason out the issue. This practice must be strongly discouraged as it makes fools of people through pseudo-science. Something needs to be done to fix this matter.
Shiva Neupane, Melbourne