Bereaved families left in lurchThe bereaved families of the three persons who were killed in police firing at Rangeli and Dayaniya in Morang on Thursday have been left in the lurch.
The bereaved families of the three persons who were killed in police firing at Rangeli and Dayaniya in Morang on Thursday have been left in the lurch.
Shibu Majhi, 27, who was shot as the Madhesi Morcha cadres clashed with police, was a homeless squatter in Dayaniya-9. His wife Shikha Devi is still unable to recover from the death of the sole breadwinner. “He was not a supporter of any political party,” said Ranjodevi, a relative.
Shibu’s two children are too young to sense the tragedy. They hope their father will one day return home. “Shikha Devi often collapses,” said Ranjodevi. Locals said the financial condition of the bereaved family is poor.
The family of Mahadev Rishidev, another deceased, also has little interest in politics. Rishidev was hit by bullets when he was in Rangeli to see the Morcha’s rally along with his friends. He died at Golden Hospital in Biratnagar later.
“There’s no one to take care of us,” lamented Sita, Rishidev’s wife. “He did not listen when I pleaded with him not to go,” she said. There are five children in Rishidev’s family and no grown up male to work on the farm. Draupadi Devi Chaudhary, the third victim, was planning to return home after meeting her daughter in Rangeli on the fateful day. She managed the household affairs. Her husband Jayanath Prasad Chaudhary supports the Rastriya Prajatantra Party.
DAO recommends martyr status
MORANG: The Morang District Administration Office has decided to recommend that the three persons be declared martyrs. The DAO has agreed to write to the Home Ministry also recommending compensation for the bereaved families. Chief District Officer Toyam Raya said a meeting on Sunday had decided to form a committee to investigate into the incident.
An all-party meeting organised at the DAO also assured free treatment for those injured in the protests. An agreement was reached to provide Rs25,000 for each of the three families to perform the final rites. Following the DAO decision, Morcha leader Mohammad Kadir said they would receive the bodies and perform the final rites on Monday. (PR)
Martyrdom for victims perpetuates impunity
Dewan Rai (Kathmandu)
As leaders of the Samyukta Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha visited the National Human Rights Commission on Sunday to hand over a memo demanding probe into violence reported during the Madhes agitation, an all-party meeting in Morang decided to name three people killed in Rangeli as martyrs.
Draupadi Devi Chau-dhary, Shibu Majhi and Mahadev Rishidev—died in police firing on Thursday. The government has already agreed to declare others who died in clashes during the five-month long Madhes movement as martyrs. The declaration may have addressed the political demands of some but it has let the perpetrators off the hook. “If the government acknowledges that the deceased was not a criminal by announcing him/her as martyr, then the crime was committed from the other side,” said rights lawyer Santosh Sigdel.
“The law enforcement agencies should book the culprits or else it gives a rise to the culture of impunity,” he added.
At least 54 people, including 11 security personnel, have been killed in the Tarai unrest so far. Police have interrogated two dozen individuals in connection with the Tikapur incident in Kailali but no security official has been held responsible for extra-judicial killings so far.
On Sunday, the delegates demanded the rights violators be charged with criminal offence. All the three persons killed on Thursday received bullets above waist, which is against the Local Administration Act-2008. The law specifies that security personnel can shoot at suspected criminals or law violators below the knee.
“We are committed to human rights,” said DIG Kamal Singh Bam. “Once we have our report ready, we will take action against those involved in rights violation.”
Nepal Police has taken action against 633 police personnel since 1995. According to the human rights unit of Nepal Police, two Additional Inspector Generals, one Deputy Inspector General, nine Senior Superintendents of Police, eight Superintendents of Police, 16 Deputy Superintendents of Police and 57 inspectors faced action on rights violation charges.
Tarai Madhes Loktantrik Party Vice-chairman Hridayesh Tripathi, Sadbhawana Party Co-chairman Laxman Lal Karna, Tarai Madhes Sadbhawana Party senior leader Ram Naresh Raya and Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum-Nepal Chief Whip Shivaji Yadav had reached the NHRC office in Kathmandu to meet the commissioners.
NHRC Chairman Anup Raj Sharma told them that the government should be sensitive about the situation in the plains.
The government has not implemented the recommendations made by the national rights body for action against rights violators.
In its 14-year history, the NHRC has investigated and recommended 735 cases of grave human rights violation for action. However, only 105 recommendations were implemented—all of them related to providing compensation for the victims.
The Human Rights Watch has documented cases of rights violations. The NHRC in its Tarai report also listed the police excesses.