Banda affects life in Dhangadhi for second day in successionThe roads in Dhangadhi wore a deserted look for the second consecutive day on Sunday due to the banda enforced by locals in the district headquarters of Kailali and the temporary provincial capital in protest of the provincial assembly’s decision to designate Godawari as the capital of Sudurpashchim Province.
The roads in Dhangadhi wore a deserted look for the second consecutive day on Sunday due to the banda enforced by locals in the district headquarters of Kailali and the temporary provincial capital in protest of the provincial assembly’s decision to designate Godawari as the capital of Sudurpashchim Province.
Life was affected in and around Dhangadhi as vehicles largely remained off the roads with market places and educational institutions closed due to the strike. Although a few vehicles had plied the streets and market places opened in the morning, the banda was strictly enforced by protesters later in the day.
Nepali Congress cadres and the locals under the banner of Citizen Struggle Committee have been protesting the provincial assembly’s decision to shift the provincial headquarters to Godawari from Dhangadhi.
The designated capital lies at Ward No 2 and 4 of Godawari Municipality which is about 20km from Dhangadhi. The assembly meeting on Friday endorsed the proposal to name Province 7 as Sudurpashchim and Godawari its capital with a two-thirds majority. Of the 53 provincial lawmakers, 38 voted in favour of the proposal while 12 NC lawmakers and two from the Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal boycotted the assembly in protest.
Government vehicle vandalised
The banda enforcers vandalised a government vehicle of Birendra KC, under secretary at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law in Sudurpashchim Province. A motorcycle-borne man hurled stones at the KC’s vehicle (Ba 1 Jha 9703) near Boradandi area while he was heading towards the ministry from Dhangadi Airport. The rear windshield of the vehicle was smashed in the incident.
KC is a member of the high-level probe committee formed to investigate the rape and murder of Nirmala Pant of Kanchanpur. He had resigned from the committee citing threat to his life but later returned to the committee. Police, however, ruled out suggestions of other motives behind the incident. “It was not premeditated attack on KC. The banda enforcers just vandalised the government vehicle,” police said.
Later on Sunday, the banda enforcers withdrew the banda, considering the upcoming Dashain festival. The NC district committee meeting decided to call off the strike that would affect normal life ahead of the major festival of Hindus. “We decided to call off the strike as per suggestions from various quarters,” said NC Vice President Prakash Bam.
The NC lawmakers obstructed the Provincial Assembly meeting on Sunday, saying that the ruling Nepal Communist Party decided to shift the provincial capital unilaterally. They obstructed the assembly, demanding a withdrawal of the decision which led the Speaker to postpone the meeting.