Kin of missing to act tough

KATHMANDU: President of the Society for the Kin of Missing Fighters Ek Raj Bhandari on Monday said people would start taking action against authorities responsible for the disappearance of their kin during the Maoist insurgency.

“We know the people involved in disappearing our near and dear ones,” Bhandari said at a press conference organised to make public the decision of the Society. “People will take action against them if the government fails to find out the whereabouts of the missing fighters.”

Bhandari, a Constituent Assembly member, said their street protest began today and would continue till the President corrects his “unconstitutional” move.

He accused Chief of Army Staff Rookmangud Katawal of disappearing their kin, holding officiating Nepali Congress and CPN-UML leaders also responsible, during their period in power.

Dozens of their protestors were reportedly injured when the police lathi-charged them while they were staging a sit-in at the President’s

office this morning. Moti Maya Paudel had collapsed in the police action. Babu Lal Maharjan and other injured are undergoing treatment in TU Teaching Hospital.

“This is just the beginning.

We will intensify our stir throughout the country unless the government made public the whereabouts of our people,” Bhandari said.

The conference unanimously elected a 22-member executive committee under Bhandari’s leadership yesterday. Sabitra Dura of Kaski was elected vice-president, Ashok Rokaya of Banke general secretary, Puja Khanal of Jhapa secretary and Renuka Chaulagain of Kavre the treasurer. So far 1,074 families have registered with the Society, while many more are in the process, Bhandari said.