Nidhi sorry for Maleth incident

Rajbiraj, May 17

Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bimalendra Nidhi today expressed sadness at the Saptari incident and apologised for the fatalities caused.

Five United Democratic Madhesi Front cadres had died when police opened fire at UDMF cadres demonstrating against a CPN-UML programme being held at Maleth, Saptari,  on March 6.

Nidhi arrived here two months after the tragic incident and was addressing a programme organised at the CDO quarters today to honour and provide compensation to the martyrs’ families.

“In the wake of the incident, a ministerial decision had declared the deceased martyrs and formed a three-member probe committee led by former judge Ali Akbar Mikari. We will start necessary process for action as per the report,” said the minister, who provided Rs 1 million each to the families of the deceased.

The home minister described the first phase of local elections as successful and expressed his confidence that the second phase of polls would follow suit with the cooperation of the stakeholders. “As for the lapses in the constitution, Congress is committed to do the needful, as today evening itself there is a meeting due between the leaders of NC and United Democratic Madhesi Front to resolve the issue,” he said.

On the occasion, Rastriya Janata Party coordinator Sunil Kumar Jha submitted a four-point memorandum to the minister. The memorandum has sought, among others, martyr’s status for Raghu Safi, a Maleth incident injured who died a few days after the incident, and compensation to his family. Besides the demand for amendment of the constitution prior to elections and probe into the Maleth incident, the memorandum has also sought due compensation for the families who suffered damage to property and crops in a gale here a few days ago.

Nidhi also met with security agency chiefs of the eastern region and was informed about the election-related security situation. On their part, the security agency chiefs had identified Saptari and Siraha as sensitive districts in terms of security and informed they were planning a new security strategy.