September 20: The Supreme Court has issued a show cause notice against the government for suspending Bhishma Raj Dhungana from the post of chairman of the Securities Board of Nepal (SEBON).
Dhungana had filed a writ petition at the Supreme Court on September 8 against his suspension, challenging the Office of the Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers (OPMCM).
Hearing on his writ, a single bench of Supreme Court Justice Kumar Regmi issued a show cause notice in the name of the government.
The Supreme Court has called on both sides to discuss about the issue. A single bench of Justice Regmi has directed the OPMCM to submit written clarification for the suspension of Dhungana by September 21.
Dhungana courted controversy after it was revealed that his daughter Rebika Dhungana had bought the shares of Sarbottam Cement in the process of public issuance of securities through book building method, which according to the government is now allowed.
Following an internal investigation into the issue by a probe committee formed under the Ministry of Finance, a meeting of Council of Ministers on September 1 formed a three-member commission of inquiry under the chairmanship of former high court judge Anantraj Dumre to investigate into the matter. Expert Member Narayan Prasad Poudel and Arjun Kumar Khadka, Joint Secretary of the Law Commission are the members of the panel.
It has been revealed that Dhungana had acquired 10,000 shares of Sarbottam Cement in the name of his own daughter. The Ministry of Finance had sought for an explanation from SEBON after it became public that the shares were taken in the name of his daughter Rebika Dhungana who is living in the US.
Dhungana, on the other hand, has been saying that it is not justifiable for the government to form an investigation committee and suspend him on the issue of shares bought by his married daughter. He argues that the government's suspension is malicious and has gone to court seeking legal help.
Finance Committee of Parliament had also instructed the government to investigate the matter.
In a similar case, the CEO of Nepal Stock Exchange (NEPSE) had resigned from his post to facilitate investigation. However, Dhungana decided to knock the door of the court instead of resigning.