One protester dies, several hurt in Tarai demonstrationsThe supporters of Samyukta Loktantrik Madhes Morcha continued their protest in several Tarai districts as the new constitution was promulgated on Sunday.
The supporters of Samyukta Loktantrik Madhes Morcha continued their protest in several Tarai districts as the new constitution was promulgated on Sunday.
A protester identified as Satrudhna Patel of Pakhamainpur succumbed to bullet injuries while two others were seriously injured in police firing in Birgunj, Parsa Superintendent of Police Dibesh Lohani said the security personnel were compelled to open fire as the protesters turned violent.
Vijaya Yadav of Sisiyadi Bairiya and Namsi Raut of Bagahi, who sustained bullet injuries in the incident, were taken to Kathmandu for treatment. Around a dozen protesters, including the central member of Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum Nepal Karima Begam, were hurt in a scuffle with police.
The Morcha supporters also vandalised the residence of CPN-UML lawmaker Rajkumar Gupta at Birgunj-17 while some journalists were also assaulted.
Hundreds of protesters had come to Birgunj from various villages to attend the protest rally to observe Sunday as a black day.
Meanwhile, Sadbhawana Party Chairman Rajendra Mahato was criticised by protesters for not joining the rally.
There were sporadic clashes between protesters and the security personnel in Biratnagar, Morang. Raj Kumar Yadav, Morang Chairman of Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum Nepal, said two protesters sustained bullet injuries in police firing. More than two dozen protesters were injured in clashes. Protesters also torched a government vehicle. There were also reports about skirmishes between Morcha supporters and local people. In the evening, the Morcha staged a blackout protest.
In Rautahat, the Morcha activists torched the party office of CPN-UML at Garuda. The agitated mob also clashed with the security personnel. The Morcha also staged demonstration against the new constitution in Nepalgunj, Banke.
The Morcha supporters vandalised and torched the residence of Nepali Congress lawmaker Sita Devi Yadav in Siraha. They also torched a jeep and two motorcycles parked inside the compound of the lawmaker’s house. Eyewitnesses said the protesters set fire to the party flag of the NC and hoisted a black flag. The protesters also vandalised the houses of lawmaker Ganesh Mandal and Dharmanath Sah in the district.
Meanwhile, Chairman of Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum Nepal Upendra Yadav has said that the government was not in favour of talks to solve the issue of Madhes. “We are ready to hold talks if the past agreements are implemented,” Yadav told the reporters in Siraha on Sunday.
The Tharuhat supporters staged demonstrations in Kailali and Kanchanpur districts to protest the new constitution on Sunday. Stating that the new constitution failed address the issue of the Tharu community, the protesters marked September 20 as a black day. The demonstrators took out protest rallies carrying black flags at Attariya, Sukhkhad, Lamki, Rajipur, Chaumala, Masuriya, among other places, in Kailali. Tharuhat supporters also staged demonstrations in various parts of Kanchanpur district.
The Gurung community in Pokhara and the Magar community in Palpa also staged demonstrations to protest the new constitution.
Bethari shooting death toll reaches 5
BHAIRAHAWA: Nandini Pandey, who was injured in police shooting at Bethari in Bhairahawa last week, died during treatment at Universal Teaching Hospital in Bhairahawa.
With her passing, the death toll of Bethari shooting incident has reached five. Four people, including a four-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl, had died when police opened fire at a busy marketplace at Bethari on Tuesday. Several others were injured, among them one Swogati Murau is in critical condition.
Valley strike has little impact
KATHMANDU: A banda called by the dissident parties inside Kathmandu Valley was largely ineffective.
Public and private vehicles plied the streets as usual, though the banda supporters torched a bus in Kathmandu.
Police arrested 12 banda enforcers, nine in Kathmandu and three in Lalitpur.
Senior Superintendent of Police Narayan Singh Khadka, spokesperson for Kathmandu Metropolitan Police Office, said the banda supporters had also planted fake bombs at two places in Lalitpur district.
(With inputs from local correspondents)
Security on high-alert
As the Constitution of Nepal 2015 was promulgated on Sunday, the Home Ministry has instructed the security agencies to remain on high-alert in Tarai districts, where several Madhes-based parties and other smaller groups have been protesting the seven-province federal model for over a month now.
The integrated security plan has identified the districts, including Bardiya, Parsa, Bara, Dhanusa, Rautahat, Mahottari and Siraha, as sensitive in terms of security.
Only on Sunday, at least one person died while more than three people were critically injured in Birgunj, Parsa, when a clash erupted between the disgruntled groups and security personnel. A day earlier, an unidentified group had detonated an IED at a temporary police post in Lamahi, Dang. There were no casualties as the post was recently evacuated.
“The solution might be political but at present our task is to stop violence,” Home Secretary Surya Silwal said. “People are free to stage non-violent protests. But when they begin disrupting public lives or attacking security forces, we should respond for public security.”
The concerned chief district officers have been directed to respond as the situation demands, said Silwal. Security agencies have been guarding the houses of lawmakers, local leaders and party offices of Nepali Congress, CPN (UML) and UCPN (Maoist) in several Tarai districts where Madhesis, Tharus and other smaller groups have been staging protests.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Kamal Singh Bam, also the spokesperson for Nepal Police, said the regional police offices also have back-up forces on standby. The Armed Police Force has also increased its presence in Central and Eastern regions.