For nearly the last two months, tourism entrepreneurs and NTB have been in a tussle regarding alleged irregularities by the acting CEO and NTB Board. More than 20 associations related to the travel and tour industry have also been demanding investigation over irregularities at NTB, its restructuring and amendment to the NTB Act, among others. They have also been demanding that the government remove Acting CEO of NTB Subash Nirola, accusing him of misusing NTB’s funds.
Nirola, however has been saying that they were using funds as per the rules of NTB. After the Tourism Ministry’s assurance to solve the problems, agitating tourism entrepreneurs had postponed their protest and hunger strike on June 2. But, even after this NTB is yet to start its regular services as some staffs are also against supporting Nirola.
“We are hopeful that NTB will start its normal work from Thursday even if acting CEO is absent,” said Ramesh Dhamala, president of Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal. He said the NTB Act allows other senior officials of NTB to run the office in the absence of a CEO or acting CEO.
Meanwhile, MoCTCA has added two new members in the committee formed to make recommendations to the government for restructuring NTB and making it an effective institution. The two new members added, on Monday, are Ang Tshering Sherpa, president of Nepal Mountaineering Association and Sher Jung Karki, undersecretary of MoCTCA. Committee now has a total of 15 members under coordination of Mohan Krishna Sapkota, joint secretary at MoCTCA.
Earlier, based on the demand of tourism entrepreneurs, MoCTCA had included three new members representing travel and tourism sector in the investigation committee formed to probe possible irregularities at NTB. The seven-member committee is headed by Purna Chandra Bhattarai, joint secretary of MoCTCA.