'Blockade more damaging than quake'

Fuel crisis has restricted movement of people

Pokhara, December 15

CPN-UML secretary Yogesh Bhattarai has described the unofficial Indian blockade as more damaging and painful than the devastating earthquake.

“Everyone witnessed the devastation caused by the massive earthquakes but the sufferings caused by the blockade has been far more damaging,” said the UML leader, talking to mediapersons in Pokhara on Tuesday.

“Schools and businesses have been shut, people don’t have fuel to cook food and shortage of petroleum products has restricted movement of people and goods. Can we imagine anything worse than this?” he questioned. Bhattarai also warned of a serious humanitarian crisis if the blockade at border checkpoints continues.

On a different note, the UML leader flayed Nepali Congress for obstructing House proceedings. “At a time when even the agitating United Democratic Madhesi Front is ready to cooperate with the government, it is unfortunate that the Nepali Congress is obstructing passage of the Bill on Reconstruction Authority,” he said.

Stating that the government is preparing to sign an agreement with China on import of petroleum products, Bhattarai also accused the Madhes-based leaders of using innocent people for their vested interests.

He also expressed confidence that that government would soon resolve the Madhes agitation.