Lawmakers express concerns over increasing role of Nepali Army « Khabarhub
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Lawmakers express concerns over increasing role of Nepali Army

12 June 2024  

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KATHMANDU: Several Members of Parliament (MPs) have raised concerns about the role of the Nepali Army in the parliamentary session on Wednesday.

During the House of Representatives meeting, MPs critically commented on the responsibilities assigned to the army, particularly criticizing its involvement in contracting and the perception that national security is solely the army’s responsibility.

Prithvi Subba Gurung, an MP from the main ruling party CPN-UML, questioned the appropriateness of allowing the Nepali Army to engage in business and contracting. “The Nepali Army is a sensitive institution. Is it justifiable to let them engage in business?” he asked. “We permit them to handle contracts. From a security and sensitivity standpoint, is this appropriate?”

Gurung expressed concerns that involving the army in commercial activities might increase its ambitions, posing a threat to the system.

“If the army becomes too ambitious, looking at incidents in various countries, how can we curb the situation, then?” Gurung said.

He also made strong comments regarding the understanding of national security.

“The notion that national security is solely the responsibility of the Nepali Army is held by some senior officials,” Gurung said, adding, “National security is not just about the Nepali Army. We have the Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force.”

He reiterated on the need to manage and strengthen national security through timely amendment of the laws.

Dhruv Bahadur Pradhan, an MP from the Rastriya Prajatantra Party, also criticized the idea that national security is regarded solely as the army’s responsibility.

“During times of need, national security cannot be managed solely by the Nepali Army,” he said. “There might be situations where Nepali citizens also need to stand up. In such preparations, I suggest expanding the scope of the National Service Corps.”

Similarly, Prabhu Sah, the chairman of the Aam Janata Party (AJP), emphasized the need to reconsider the issue of awarding contracts to the army.

“We can involve the army in development projects, and we have done so,” he said, adding, “But if they themselves handle contracts, what is the difference between the Road Division and the Army? If it’s going to be done through contractors, why should it be done through the army?”

Sah stated that the army is a respected institution and should not be demeaned by involving it in such matters.

Publish Date : 12 June 2024 19:12 PM

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