‘Resource crunch affecting probe into conflict-era cases’

Kathmandu, November 5

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission said its investigation into insurgency-era rights violation cases were affected due to lack of human, technical and financial resources.

Talking to The Himalayan Times, TRC Chairman Surya Kiran Gurung said the government had failed to provide necessary employees, technical hands and funds for investigation into registered cases of conflict-era rights violation.

Over 58,000 cases of conflict-era human rights violation, including heinous crimes like murder, rape and torture, have been registered at TRC.

Chairman Gurung said the government had not provided required resources despite repeated assurances from the highest level, including from the prime minister, finance minister and minister for peace and reconstruction.“We were assured by the prime minister and other ministers that the government would provide all necessary support to the TRC,” Gurung said. “Unfortunately, we have received no support from the government.”

Currently, around 100 employees, including support staff and drivers, are working in the TRC. But, a TRC member said the number should double.

Likewise, during a meeting with Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the transitional body had sought at least Rs 500 million from the government to which the PM had responded positively.

TRC has called senior administrators of concerned ministries and offices to inquire about the cause behind the delay.  Secretaries of the Ministry of General Administration; Ministry of Home Affairs; Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs as well as representatives of the Office of Attorney General will attend the meeting.

The body had earlier submitted a proposal detailing necessary staffers, experts and technical hands as well as financial requirements to the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction.

Earlier, the Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons had also expressed its concern about severe human resource crunch,

as the government fell short of making available adequate staffers as promised. The government had assured it would make available at least 70 staffers when the body was formed in February 2015, but the CIEDP eventually got only 42 employees.

On top of that, many senior and trained officers, who had acquired training from foreign experts on conducting investigation into disappearance cases, left the transitional justice body before commencement of its investigation into cases of disappearance.