The Lumbini Development Trust has taken decisive action by revoking permission granted to private companies for the development of the historic Ramgram Stupa area. The decision comes after significant public outcry and directives from governmental bodies.
Chairing an executive committee meeting, Minister for Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation, Sudan Kirati, led the cancellation of agreements with two private firms. This move follows a directive from the House of Representatives’ Public Accounts Committee to annul the permissions.
The controversial decision to lease 120 bigha of land for 99 years to Singapore-based Moksha Foundation and Nepal-based Promised Land has stirred controversy. Notably, 116 bigha of this land belongs to local residents, necessitating their acquisition.
Criticism mounted after the unilateral decision by the Lumbini Development Trust’s vice-chairman, Lharkyal Lama, disregarding objections from relevant ministries and the Department of Archaeology.
The House panel’s instructions to cancel the process and investigate involved individuals highlight the seriousness of the matter. The Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority has been tasked with probing the affair.
This development underscores the importance of preserving cultural heritage and maintaining public trust. The decision to halt private development in the Ramgram area is a significant step towards safeguarding the historical and spiritual significance of the site.