Mass chants anti-King

Kathmandu, August 16:

A creative and literary programme organised by the civil society for total democracy at Basantapur today turned into an anti-monarchy demonstration after riot police tried to disrupt the programme. The mass attending the programme turned aggressive after a dozen of riot policemen intervened in the mass meet at around 5:45 pm and tried to snatch some of the placards they were carrying. The mass then shouted anti-monarchy slogans for about 20 minutes. Later, rights activists Kapil Shrestha and journalists Shyam Shrestha and Kanak Mani Dixit, among others, calmed down the mass and the literary programme resumed.

The riot policemen later started stopping participants from entering the venue at Basantapur. However, no one was arrested.

Around two dozen women were carrying lit lanterns in the daylight to symbolically represent the country’s situation. As part of the performance art of Asmina Ranjit, some women in widows’ attire were mediating amid the background of cries of widows and orphans. At the programme, Shambhu Thapa, Keshav Man Shakya and Dhan Kumari Sunar, representing different walks of life, stressed the need to consolidate the street movement against autocracy.Singers Ramesh, Rayan and Ramkrishna Duwal sang songs for total democracy and artiste Manoj Gajurel presented the current situation facing the country through satires.

Poets Durgalal Shrestha, Shuresh Kiran, Rajani Mila, Dhamendra Jha, Mahesh Maskey, Biplab Dhakal and others recited poems for democracy, while cartoons of Batsayayan, Ramesh Bishta, Basu Chhitiz, Abin and Rajesh KC were on display at the programme venue. The programme was organised by the Civic Movement for Democracy and Peace.