APF displaced in dire straits

Dang, December 13:

Sixty families, who were displaced after the establishment of Jwala Mai Battalion of the Armed Police Force at Bhalubang of Lalmatiya-3 in the district, have been waiting for

compensation of their land and properties for the last six years.

“I witnessed the destruction of my house by a bulldozer. However, I am yet to get compensation for my land and property,” Udayraj Shrestha, one of the displaced, said.

The base camp of APF was established in Bhalubang on April 4, 2002. The displaced have neither got compensation for their property destroyed by the APF nor have they got their land back. The displaced families are taking shelter at a public land at Ratodanda in Pulchowk, Lalmatiya-3.

“We are facing difficulties to arrange food and shelter,” the displaced “said, adding that the

then chief of the battalion Sanat Kumar Basnet had ordered the dismantling of their houses.

Various government bodies, including the District Administration Office, Land Revenue Office and Bhalubang City Development Committee, had assured them of resettling them in other areas. However, the assurances never materialised.

“We requested different bodies to provide relief to us and solve our problems. But nobody is listening to our problems” Udayraj said.

Another displaced, Bhimarjun Regmi, said, “It seems our children will also have to experience

the problems that we have been suffering from,” he added.

“Our children are suffering from various diseases. But we don’t have enough money for their treatment,” another displaced, Kedar Tamang, said, adding that they have been forced to take shelter in public land because of the APF. A committee was formed under the coordination of ward chairman Mahesh Rijal for the evaluation of land and property acquired by the APF. The committee had stated that Rs 6.6 million should be provided to the displaced people as compensation. But it never materialised.

“We had informed the authorities concerned about the evaluation and had recommended compensation for the displaced families. But nobody heeded to our suggestions,” Rijal added.

An all-party meeting held on October 31 last year had recommended the local administration to provide compensation for the victims.

District Administration Office, Dang, said compensation would be provided to the displaced families after the local administration received funds from the government.