Friday, February 1, 2013

Pun claims party cadres paying money for national assembly

Though finance minister Barshaman Pun claimed that his party is able to finance its seventh national assembly, entrepreneurs blamed the ruling party’s forceful donation drive for disturbing investment climate in the country.
"The UCPN-Maoist is capable to hold its national assembly scheduled to be held in Hetauda from tomorrow from the financial help of its own well wishers, cadres, representatives and observers of the national assembly," Pun said, adding that some 3,500 representatives and observers will have to pay Rs 5,000 per head to take part in the assembly. "Our party's 35,000 registered members will also help financially according to their capacity, apart from well wishers."
If Pun is to believe, the party will collect Rs 17.50 million from its 3,500 representatives and observers, if they all pay. But the party is still creating donation terror and threatening entrepreneurs. But UCPN-Maoist has projected some Rs 80 million for a week long assembly. "We have asked for help with the entrepreneurs but not forcefully," Pun added.
UCPN-Maoist is holding its national assembly in Hetauda Industrial Estate — requesting the entrepreneurs in the industrial area — on February 2-7 also to save money," he said, adding that the chairman, vice chairmen and all the party cadres are staying in the industrial area to save money. "The party has arranged hotels only for the guests."
But the entrepreneurs tell a different story. "The ruling UCPN-Maoist party cadres have been forcing us to give donation, if not they are asked to give accomodations for a week during the assembly," said an entrepreneur without willing to be named.
The business community has already asked the government to immediately stop the forceful donation drive and security threat on entrepreneurs. "The UCPN-Maoist cadres have been issuing threats, if we denied them," the entrepreneur said, adding that the private sector is facing hard times due to chronic power shortage and repeated labour problems but still we are treated as the milking cow.
The government has neither been able to bring any relief package to operate industries in full capacity nor been able create investment friendly environment, he blamed.
According to the central bank's report, industries were able to utilise only 58 per cent of their capacity in the last fiscal year 2011-12 because of declining capacity of the industries, high labour cost and rising prices of raw materials.
The government has declared the year 2012-13 as Nepal Investment Year but failed to create investment friendly environment, according to another entrepreneur, who opined that without building confidence within the domestic private sector, it is not possible to attract foreign direct investment (FDI).
A fortnight ago too, CPN-Maoist — the splinter group of UCPN-Maoist — had also forced entrepreneurs to give donations for its seventh national assembly.
Due to being a ruling party, UCPN-Maoist cadres have also received donation from the government offices.
Until the political party's become transparent in its financial transaction, such forceful donation drive and threat will continue. 


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