Blasts outside schools cause panicImprovised Explosive Devices (IEDs) went off outside two schools in the Capital on Tuesday morning, triggering panic.
Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) went off outside two schools in the Capital on Tuesday morning, triggering panic.
There were no injuries, said police, adding that a school suffered minor damage. But the early morning blasts unleashed terror, just as many parents were preparing to send their wards to schools. And there were reports of suspicious objects in and around six other schools in Kathmandu and Lalitpur, causing scare among people.
Two IEDs exploded outside Aakash Deep Higher Secondary School and Manakamana Higher Secondary School in Jorpati in the wee hours. The entrance gate of Aakash Deep Higher Secondary School was damaged in the blast.
“The explosion took place just after three in the morning. The news circulated like wildfire. Very few students showed up, so we dismissed classes at 11am,” said Suabha KC, vice-principal of Aakash Deep School.
As people in the Valley woke up to the news of bombs planted in schools of Kathmandu and Laltipur, many decided not to send their children to schools.
“I just switched the radio off to make sure my kids don’t get to hear the news about explosions,” said Neera Tiwari of Kaushaltar. “I decided not to send them to school.”
Sunita Bashyal, who had not heard about the blasts, had already dropped her kids to school. “As soon as I came to know about the explosions, I rushed to the school and brought them home,” she said.
Suspicious objects were found at Rai School in Boudha, East Pool School and Ambassador School in Jorpati, Kantipur English School in Maharajgunj and Kanchenjunga English School in Dallu and Radiant Readers’ Academy in Sanepa. Teams from the Nepal Army were deployed to defuse the bombs. According to Brig Tara Bahadur Karki, spokesperson for the Nepal Army, most of the objects that were disposed contained explosive chemicals and materials. These unexploded devices were either detonated or removed.
Police later arrested two persons for detonating the bombs. They have been identified as Shanker Lakhe and Chandra Tamang and are central committee members of Maoist Communist Centre Nepal led by Devendra Mahat, according to police. Lakhe is a former Maoist fighter.
A team of police deployed from Metropolitan Police Circle, Boudha arrested the duo with pamphlets.
“There were traces of gun-powder in their hands,” said SSP Bikram Singh
Thapa, chief of Metropolitan Police Range, Teku. “They were arrested a few months ago as well for setting a school bus on fire.”
KATHMANDU: The Private and Boarding Schools Association Nepal (Pabson), NPabson and Higher Secondary Schools Association on Tuesday condemned bomb blasts outside two schools and planting of explosive devices at other schools in the Capital. At a joint programme organised on Tuesday afternoon, the umbrella organisations of private institutions demanded that the government ensure safety of schools and children. Issuing a statement, the Central Child Welfare Board (CCWB) said it “condemns such acts which can have deep psychological scar on the minds of young children.” It has also urged all concerned to resolve their issues through dialogue. Similarly, The United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) also condemned the placement and explosions of bombs at schools, saying “schools are meant to be safe havens and must remain as areas where children can learn and grow in safe and happy environment free from any violence and threats. “When some political activists resort to blowing up schools, I urge them to think how they would have felt if someone else had done the same thing to their schools or favourite places during their own childhood,” a Unicef press release quoted Tomoo Hozumi, Unicef Nepal representative, as saying. (PR)