Murari Raj Sharma

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Murari Raj Sharma
Nepalese foreign secretary
In office
November 1997 – 1999
Nepalese Permanent Representative next the Headquarters of the United Nations
In office
July 20, 2000 – 2002[1]
Preceded by1956-1960: Rishikesh Shah
Succeeded byDurga Prasad Bhattarai
Nepalese Ambassador to the Court of St James's
In office
February 12, 2008 – 2010
Preceded byPrabal S.J.B. Rana
Succeeded bySuresh Chandra Chalise
Personal details
Born (1951-04-01) April 1, 1951 (age 68)

Murari Raj Sharma is the former ambassador of Nepal to the United Kingdom. He presented his letters of credence to the British Queen on February 12, 2008 at Buckingham Palace.[2] Before taking up the present post, he was Member of the United Nations Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions. Former ambassador of Nepal to the United Nations Sharma was also concurrently accredited to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Cuba and Venezuela. Winner of several prizes, including the prestigious Mainali Short Story Prize of Nepal, he has co-authored the book entitled Reinventing the United Nations and is also the author of Murari Adhikari's Short Stories.

In 2006, he chaired a high level task force that reviewed Nepal's foreign policy in the new political context and presented the report with several far-reaching recommendations to the Government of Nepal. The recommendations are being gradually implemented.

As ambassador to the United Nations, Sharma held many important positions of the United Nations. He was Chairman of the Fifth (Administrative and Budgetary) Committee of the General Assembly, Vice President of the General Assembly and of the Economic and Social Council. As Chairman, he was responsible to conduct the intergovernmental negotiations on the budget, structure, and human resources of the United Nations,[3] something he did very successfully and on time, a rarity at the world body. In his capacity as Vice President of the General Assembly, he presided over the Assembly's function to congratulate the then UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan upon his receiving the Nobel Prize.[4] and many other important activities including the launching of the Year of Mountains.[5] As Vice President of ECOSOC, Sharma was responsible for the Coordination Segment,[6] and he performed his responsibility very successfully.

Sharma also led, and participated in, his country's delegation to important international conferences. Notable among the delegations he led were the Almaty Conference on Landlocked Developing Countries and the follow-up conferences on HIV/AIDS, Children and Social Development. He also participated in such world conferences as on Human Rights in Vienna, on Population in Cairo, on Social Development in Copenhagen, on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, on Women in Beijing, and on Least Developed Countries in Rabat.

During his work as ambassador in New York, Sharma served as vice chairman of the UNICEF executive board[7] and of the Least Developed Country Bureau. In that capacity, he led the board delegation to Brazil on a study tour and met several high officials in the country. He was very active in promoting the interests of the least developed countries and landlocked developing countries at the United Nations.

When he was member of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions of the United Nations, Sharma supported the pro-democracy movement in Nepal and helped organize rallies in support of the movement and protests against King Gyanendra's direct and dictatorial rule in his country. He lobbied the American lawmakers, government and people as well as the United Nations against the Royal government in Nepal. He also gave talk programs, wrote articles and gave keynote speeches to build Nepali and global public opinion against the regime.[8] Angered by these activities, the Royal government even sought to seize his passport and withdraw his pension.

In 2007, he worked as consultant to Corporate Risk International, a Washington-based company from home, before getting appointed as Nepal's ambassador to the United Kingdom.

He has made presentations on different issues at Columbia University, New York University, Michigan State University, New School University, Williams College, and International Institute for Strategic Studies (London),[9] among others.

Before going to New York, Sharma was Foreign Secretary of Nepal and engaged in many high level negotiations with several countries in the world, including India, China, Thailand, Burma, Russia, to name a few. He helped Nepal successfully defuse the crisis created by the hijacking of the Indian Airlines flight from Kathmandu that was taken to Afghanistan. During that time, he participated in several summits of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and chaired the body's Standing Committee as well as its sub-regional framework.

He has done considerable work in the area of public administration. Several of his reports on reforms of government entities and public enterprises, which he supervised while working with the Ministry of General Administration, have been implemented. The then His Majesty's Government of Nepal had appointed him coordinator of a working group to review and suggest restructuring of the Nepali bureaucracy in order to meet the basic needs of the Nepali people, and most of the group's recommendations were implemented. He worked as Consultant to many organizations and groups, including the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology soon after it was created and the High Level Administrative Reform Commission after the 1990 political change in Nepal. He also worked with the Pay Commission of Nepal in 1992, whose recommendations were largely implemented.

Prior to becoming Foreign Secretary of Nepal, Sharma had worked as Special Secretary and Joint Secretary (United Nations and International Law Division) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was instrumental in promoting the concept of Economic Diplomacy in Nepal. As Joint Secretary (Budget Division) of the Ministry of Finance, Sharma helped the government reform the budget classification and items of expenditure. Before that, he was also Joint Secretary t the Ministry of Home responsible for Drugs Control, Disaster Management and Immigration. His experience includes his work as Under Secretary (Administrative Reforms), Under Secretary (Drugs Control), Section Officer for Foreign Aid at the Ministry of Finance and for the Americas at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Class III Officer at Nepal Food Corporation, Joint Accounts Officer at the National Commercial Bank (Rastriya Banijya Bank). He was also Assistant Lecturer at the Sano Thimi Campus of Tribhuvan University.

He has served on the Boards of Directors of the Agriculture Development Bank, National Trading Limited, Nepal Transport Corporation, Kathmandu Valley Town Development Committee, and Institute of Foreign Affairs.

He writes a column every two weeks for Republica, the largest English daily published from Kathmandu.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Headquarters of the United Nations, [1]
  2. ^ Daily Telegraph, Court Circular, February 13, 2008
  3. ^ https://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2002/BIO3452.doc
  4. ^ http://www.unis.unvienna.org/unis/pressrels/2001/ga9931.html
  5. ^ http://www.iisd.ca/sd/mountains/
  6. ^ http://www.worldforworld.org/documents/members_ecosoc.pdf
  7. ^ http://www.unicef.org/about/execboard/files/ExBd-ref-guide-AnnexIII_06(5).pdf
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-02-12. Retrieved 2009-02-05.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ http://www.iiss.org/events-calendar/2008-events-archive/may-2008/south-asia-envoys-forum-he-mr-murai-raj-sharma/