KATHMANDU, June 1: Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) has requested the agitating tourism entrepreneurs to stop their protest, assuring them that the ministry would take needful action against anyone found guilty.
Issuing a press statement on Sunday, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Bhim Acharya said he had already formed a committee to probe into anomalies at Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) and that he would take action against those found guilty.
Saying that the ministry was studying the report of a committee formed last year for restructuring of NTB, Minister Acharya said he would soon form a taskforce by including all stakeholders to study suggestions for restructuring of NTB.
Later in the evening, a meeting was held between members of Joint Tourism Coordination Committee (JTCC) and Minister Acharya. In the meeting, Minister Acharya requested JTCC to stop the ongoing protest, according to JTCC Coordinator Ramesh Dhamala. “Minister Acharya has asked us to provide the name of the private sector representative in the taskforce that the minister is forming for restructuring of NTB,” Dhamala said.
Earlier on May 11, MoCTCA had formed a three-member committee under the leadership of Purna Chandra Bhattarai, joint secretary at the ministry, to study the demands put forward by the JTCC. The committee has been given 15 days to submit its report.
The committee, however, is yet to begin its work.
It was also assigned to look into the complaints filed against NTB at the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) and other bodies and probe into expenditures of NTB made since fiscal year 2011/12.
The committee has also been asked to study management of TIMS as well as income and expenditures made under it. It has also been assigned the task of study the Financial Bylaws of NTB and make necessary suggestions for improvements if needed.
However, JTCC continued their protest, saying that the committee didn´t include private sector representatives and tourism experts.
The agitating entrepreneurs had been demanding that the government restructure the committee and include tourism experts and private sector representatives in it.