Replace ‘people’s war’ with ‘armed conflict’: SC

Kathmandu, August 26

The Supreme Court today issued a writ of certiorari and mandamus against peace directives formulated by the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction to the issuance of identity cards for the conflict victims.

This means the government will now have to change the directives to replace the word ‘Maoist people’s war,’ with ‘armed conflict.’

The writ petitioners, including Suman Adhikari, a conflict victim, and advocate Gyanendra Aran, had objected to the use of phrases, such as ‘Maoist people’s war’, ‘those who died’, ‘political movement’, and ‘political conflict’.

Aran argued that Maoist war was not a political movement or political conflict as stated in the directives. He said all other documents, including the Interim Constitution and Comprehensive Peace Agreement, used the phrase ‘armed conflict’ to refer to the Maoist war, and therefore, the government should use the same in the directives as well.

Aran said the directives used the phrase ‘those who died’, but that was not an appropriate phrase to refer to those who were killed during the conflict. “Victims were either killed by the Maoists or the security forces and therefore the phrase ‘those who died’ is not an appropriate phrase,” Aran argued and added that the use of the phrase ‘those who died’ would humiliate the families of those who were killed by the Maoists or security personnel. The writ was issued by a joint bench of Chief Justice Kalyan Shrestha and Justice Om Prakash Mishra. Earlier, the court had issued an interim order in the case.