Nepal | July 06, 2020

15 lawmakers, activists arrested from Baluwatar

Himalayan News Service
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Kathmandu, June 24

Police have yet again used force and arrested over a dozen persons, including lawmakers and members of the Dalit community after they were sent back from the parking lot of the prime minister’s official residence at Baluwatar.

A group of six lawmakers and member of civil society had gone to meet Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli today to submit a memorandum demanding stern action against the culprit/s of the Soti incident in Rukum West where six youths from the Dalit community were allegedly killed by villagers.

Members of the joint Dalit political struggle committee, formed by leaders of 14 different parties and members of civil society, however, were denied permission to meet the PM. The PM’s personnel secretary Indra Bhandari, who was co-coordinating with the committee, agreed to receive the letter on behalf of the PM stating that the PM was not free for three days.

As per the agreement, members of the committee had gone to Baluwatar, but only to be returned from the parking lot of the PM’s official residence.

Jeevan Pariyar, a central member of the Nepali Congress and former lawmaker, said the personnel assistant of the PM Indra Bhandari denied them even the permission to enter the building although they had said they would not meet the PM. “He wanted us to hand over the letter to him at the parking lot and refused to talk with us,” Pariyar said.

Having failed to meet the PM, The group left the official residence of the PM and joined their friends who were waiting outside the building. “After knowing what had happened inside, our friends staged a protest.

But, police soon resorted to baton-charge and arrested us,” Pariyar added.

Around 15 protesters were arrested, including lawmakers Laxmi Pariyar, Sujata Pariyar and Bimala Nepali and various members of civil society representing the Dalit community.

Among the arrested people, lawmaker Laxmi suffered multiple fractures on her fingers. She was later taken to Bir Hospital as the arrested persons started protest in police custody demanding treatment, according to Jeevan Pariyar. Meanwhile, the NC has issued a press release condemning today’s police action.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 25, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.

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