Swiss Embassy denies requesting any meeting with Gokul Baskota

Gokul Baskota bribery controversy

KATHMANDU, Feb 20: The Embassy of Switzerland in Nepal has clarified that the embassy has neither requested any meeting with Minister for Communication and Information Technology Gokul Baskota nor any meeting with the minister is foreseen in the near future.

The embassy’s response comes after the leakage of an audio recording of the conversation between Baskota and a local agent Bijaya Prakash Mishra in which they talk about the expected visit of the Swiss Embassy representatives to sign the MoU on the procurement of security printing press.

Responding to a report based on the leaked audio published by myrepublica.com, in which it says the agent belongs to a Swiss Company, the embassy said they are not involved in the dealing with the person as mentioned in the report.

“The Embassy of Switzerland in Nepal wishes to make clear that no meeting has been requested by this Embassy, nor is any meeting foreseen with Minister for Communication and Information Technology in the near future on the topic mentioned in the article,” the embassy stated in a press release.

“The embassy is neither aware nor involved in the dealing of the person quoted in the article as the local agent of a Swiss Company,” the press release further reads.

Baskota came to controversy after he, in the leaked audio clip, is heard making a bargain for 70 percent cut out of Rs 700 million commission with the agent in return for awarding the contract of procurement of security printing press worth Rs 25 or 25 billion to the company.

Baskota resigned from his post as Information Minister today afternoon “on moral grounds”.