Kathmandu, December 3
Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons today organised a press conference to refute the charge of the Conflict Victims Common Platform that the transitional justice mechanism did not do anything and there was no relevance in giving them continuity.
CIEDP issued a press release saying that the CVCP charter adopted by its national conference held on November 20 and 21 was misleading. Member of the CIEDP Bishnu Pathak, who is also its spokesperson, said despite legal, financial and logistic constraints, CIEDP had completed preliminary investigation into 3,197 complaints. He said CIEDP had decided to conduct comprehensive investigation into 2,420 cases.
He said CIEDP’s investigation found 19 people who either reunited with their families or were brought in contact with the families. “CIEDP’s teams have collected data from 56 districts and soon it will cover at least 65 districts,” he added.
Chair of CIEDP Lokendra Mallick said the commission only had the mandate to investigate cases of enforced disappearance, the responsibility of prosecuting the offenders lay with the Office of the Attorney General. He said if CIEDP got six to seven years more, it could submit a report with the statements of both victims and perpetrators, but if it had to submit its report before February 10, it would be able to submit only the statements of victims.
The extended tenure of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and CIEDP will end on 10 February 2019.
Pathak, however, told THT that CIEDP could complete all the assigned tasks, including excavation of suspected sites if it was given two more years to do the job.
He said CIEDP did not record the statement of perpetrators because doing so before recording the statements of victims could be risky as the perpetrators might pose a threat to the transitional mechanism and create other obstacles.
“The best way to do the job is to record the statements of perpetrators only after recording all the victims’ statements,” said CIEDP member Pathak.
A version of this article appears in print on December 04, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.