DOHA: Nepal has recalled its Ambassador to Qatar Maya Kumari Sharma who came under fire back home following her controversial remarks and actions in Qatar.
“The ambassador has been recalled by the Nepalese government. Preparation to leave would start after papers are dispatched formally,” a Nepalese embassy official told The Peninsula yesterday.
The official said the “letter of recall” might reach the embassy on Sunday and Sharma would leave Qatar within seven days after receiving the letter. He, however, didn’t disclose the reasons behind the recall.
Sharma, 51, took over as ambassador in May 2012, according to information posted on the embassy website.
She has been in the news after her controversial interview with BBC Nepal service about six months ago in which she described Qatar as an “open jail” for Nepalese workers.
The comments were reproduced by Britain’s Guardian newspaper yesterday in an article investigating the plight of Nepalese workers in Qatar, in the context of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The Unified CPN-Maoist (UCPN-M) party in Nepal which recommended her for the post sought her resignation last week saying her activities in Qatar were against diplomatic etiquette and could spoil Nepal-Qatar relations, according to the Nepalese media.
Meanwhile, Qatari authorities are investigating allegations in the Guardian that dozens of migrant Nepalese workers have died in recent weeks, Reuters said, quoting a statement by the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee.
The Guardian report on Wednesday said thousands of Nepalese workers were enduring abuses as Qatar prepares to host the 2022 World Cup. “Like everyone viewing the video and images, and reading the accompanying texts, we are appalled by the findings presented in the The Guardian report,” the committee was quoted as saying.
“The health, safety, well-being and dignity of every worker that contributes to staging the 2022 FIFA World Cup is of the utmost importance to our committee.”