TRC begins probe into conflict-era complaints

Kathmandu, June 3

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission is all set to begin preliminary probe into insurgency-era rights violation complaints from tomorrow.

The transitional justice body is beginning investigation into such cases from its three offices —Biratnagar in Province1, Tulsipur in Province 5 and Surkhet in Province 6, according to TRC member Leela Udasi.

TRC members Manchala Jha, Srikrishna Subedi and Madhabi Bhatta will inaugurate the field offices and commence the enquiry in Biratnagar, Tulsipur and Surkhet, respectively.

A three-member investigation panel under the coordination of a joint-attorney has been set up in each province to carry out investigation into war-era human rights violation complaints. Besides, a team comprising up to 10 government staffers, including two gazetted officers has also been arranged to facilitate investigations.

Udasi said the probe would begin in other four provincesafter a few days. Udasi himself will inaugurate the extended office and commence investigation into complaints from Dipayal of Province 7 on June 9.

Upon TRC’s request, the government in January had decided to establish TRC’s extended offices in Biratnagar for Province 1; Janakpur for Province 2; Hetauda for Province 3; Pokhara for Province 4; Tulsipur for Province 5; Surkhet for Province 6; and Dipayal for Province 7. The extended offices have been set up to expedite investigation into conflict-era rights violation cases at the local level.

TRC member Bhatta told The Himalayan Times that preliminary investigation would begin in Surkhet from tomorrow itself. She added that a total of 1,000 complaints were brought to Surkhet for inquiry and the probe panel has been given a three-month’s time to complete the investigation into these complaints.

According to her, additional complaints would be sent to the extended offices once the initial probe 1,000 cases completes.

Earlier, TRC fell short of starting preliminary investigation into complaints for months due to absence of its Chairman Surya Kiran Gurung due to differences with TRC member Bhatta. He returned to the work after widespread media criticism and pressure from conflict victims earlier this month.