Lawmakers amend bill to allow use of red passport for personal visit

Lawmakers have amended the bill about passports opening the way for use of red passport even for private visits.

The bill tabled at the House of Representatives (HoR) by the Foreign Ministry restricted use of the diplomatic passport only while going abroad for government work with permission from the government. But the lawmakers have amended that provision.

The International Relations and Labor Committee of the HoR has now removed that provision and mentioned ‘provision for diplomatic and special passports will be as specified.’

The government had proposed restriction in the use of diplomatic passport to government work as some lawmakers were involved in sale of red passport in the past. They have now opened the way for its use even for private works with permission from the government.

They have now added ‘for special purpose’ after government work in the definition of diplomatic passport. This means the lawmakers can use diplomatic passport even for personal visits merely by getting a recommendation from the parliament secretariat identifying the visit as a special work. The amended bill does not have any definition of special work.

Nepali Congress (NC) lawmakers Dilendra Badu and Divya Mani Rajbhandari had registered an amendment proposal to allow federal lawmakers to use red passport for any visit. Their proposal was not accepted verbatim but the amendment has paved the way for use of red passport even for private visits in the name of special work.

Lawmaker of the Nepal Workers and Peasants Party Prem Suwal had registered an amendment proposal calling for use of personal passport by lawmakers going for personal works. But his amendment proposal was rejected.

The lawmakers currently have been using red passport even for personal works. But the parliament secretariat in recent times had started to act tough on recommendation for use of the red passport on request of the Foreign Ministry. The lawmakers were not pleased and they have now unanimously amended the provision in the bill that restricted use of red passport for personal works.



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