PM springs to indigenous people’s aid

KATHMANDU: For the first time in the history of the National Foundation for the Development of Indigenous Nationalities (NFDIN), its ex-officio chairman Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal, on Thursday chaired the meeting of its governing council.

During the inaugural session of the sixth governing council meeting of NFDIN, PM Nepal said that it was not only the question of identity but a time to guarantee the rights of indigenous nationalities.

He requested the indigenous communities to come up with their major problems on the basis of priority as there are a lot of problems facing them. He said the government would support in every way possible for the betterment of indigenous nationalities and marginalised communities.

Talking on the national politics, PM Nepal said several works can be done in the interest of backward classes, if the peace process can be taken to its logical conclusion. During the function, president, Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities Pasang Sherpa, said that the assurance of earlier governments to implement the ILO Convention number 169 was only to impress other countries.

He also expressed concern about the attitude of the government. “They form organisations for the sake of indigenous nationalities but never look after them,” he said. He said that the NFDIN lacked a proper office building as the government provided a meager budget.

Co-chairman of NFDIN Purna Kumar Sherma Limbu, Minister for Local Development and Vice-chairman Jitpal Kirat and general secretary of National Women’s Federation of Indigenous Nationalities Soma Rai had also expressed their views.