KATHMANDU, MAR 22 – Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai on Wednesday asked Minister for Labour and Transport Management Sarita Giri to resign. Giri has been accused of working hand-in-glove with controversial manpower agencies.
A source said the Prime Minister summoned Giri at his office at Singha Durbar and sought a clarification and demanded her resignation. Giri represents the Sadvawana Party (Anandidevi) in the government.
The PM expressed concern over Giri’s move to transfer the director general of the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE), Purna Chandra Bhattarai. According to the PM, Bhattarai had been working for reforms at the DoFE and aiming to make the department corruption-free. The PM also accused Giri of transferring Bhattarai at the behest of manpower agencies. “Your act may land poor Nepalis aspiring for jobs in foreign lands in trouble and promote corruption in the department, while further hindering the reform plans,” the source quoted the PM as telling Giri. The PM also repremanded Giri for not appearing on Monday and justifying her action, while she organised a press conference and levelled allegations on officials and staff who have been performing well.
In the press conference, Giri also accused director general Bhattarai of being biased while registering new manpower agencies.
Giri claimed that Bhattarai had been transferred, pending investigations, as she received written and verbal complaints from the public against the “growing anomalies in the department.” Manpower agencies that were allegedly involved in illegal practices, including human trafficking in the name of foreign employment, had been allegedly mounting pressure on Giri to transfer Bhattarai.
When contacted, Giri refused to speak on the PM’s demand for her resignation. “I met the Prime Minister. He put forth his views and I expressed my opinions,” she said.ekantipur