Kathmandu: The administration has moved forward with the process of revoking the citizenship of famed mountaineer Nirmal Purja, also known as Nimsdai after it was revealed that he has been using his Nepali citizenship and passport despite being a British citizen.
In 2012, Purja became a British citizen and received a British passport. However, Ukeraa uncovered a report with evidence that Purja was still holding and using Nepali citizenship and Nepali passport without informing the Nepali administration about it.
According to Pratigya Subedi, Assistant Chief District Officer of District Administration Office, Myagdi, they have received a report about Purja being a British citizen.
Purja had recently applied for the removal of Nepali citizenship to the Nepali embassy in the UK.
After receiving the application from Purja, the Ministry of Home Affairs sent the application to the District Administration Office, Myagdi, informed Subedi.
“The application has arrived this month. We have registered the record that he is a British citizen and the process of revoking his citizenship has already started,” said Subedi.
There is a legal provision that the Nepali citizenship is automatically revoked after any Nepali citizen becomes a citizen of another country. But Purja, taking advantage of the weak government mechanism, came to Nepal as a British citizen on a visit visa and renewed his Nepali passport based on the citizenship issued by Myagdi.
According to the Citizenship Act 2063, if a Nepalese citizen acquires the citizenship of another country, he must apply to the embassy or district administration office of the respective country. After the application is received, the process of revoking the citizenship starts.
Purja obtained a British passport on June 28, 2012. In that passport, his nationality is mentioned as British. As per the records of the Immigration Department, Purja has been using his British passport to come to Nepal on a visit visa time and time again.
However, despite having a British passport, Ukera revealed that on March 15, 2016, Purja took out a Nepali passport as a Nepali citizen.
Issuing a duplicate passport is a punishable offense under the Passport Act. If the offense is proved, the imprisonment can be up to three years.
The Passport department has not commented on the issue yet.
Nirmal Purja is a record mountaineer and former British Gurkha soldier. He set a world record by successfully climbing all 14 mountains above 8000 meters above sea level in less than 7 months (189 days).
Born in 1983 in Annapurna Rural Municipality-3, Dana, Myagdi Nepal, he has served 16 years in the British Army and spent 10 years in the UK Special Forces (UKSF).
According to the book 'Beyond Possible', he started climbing the mountain in December 2012.
His photo of a traffic jam on Mount Everest while climbing Mount Everest went viral in the media. He became more famous after a documentary about him climbing the mountains was released on Netflix.
Lately, he has been going back and forth between Britain and Nepal. He has opened a showroom in NagPokhari area of Kathmandu to sell trekking related materials under his own brand 'NIMSDAI'.
Purja has not yet issued a statement regarding the controversy.
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