Kailali killings: FNJ mission holds CDO, cops guilty

Kathmandu, June 8:

The Federation of Nepali Journalists today concluded the Kailali Chief District Officer and the local security forces were to be blamed for the May 28 incident in Dhangadhi.

Three persons were killed and nine were injured on May 28 when police opened fire at demonstrators in front of the district administration office in Dhangadhi.

The report made public today by an FNJ mission said: "On May 26, FNJ central committee informed the CDO and Superintendent of Police in Kailali about the sensitivity of the incident of beating up of journalist Lucky Chaudhary but no steps were taken to solve the problem. The incident would not have occurred if the local administration had acted on time."

The report added that Lucky Chaudhary, the editor of Hamar Pahura, a Tharu-language daily, was allegedly beaten up by the Maoist activists for publishing articles on financial irregularities

in earnings from an artificial lake and Bhedababa temple on May 24 in Dhanagadhi Post and on May 26 in Shri Nepali Times.

The demonstration was sparked by the assault on Lucky.

The report states: "Although the Maoists have no policy of beating up journalists, some local activists were found to have been engaged in beating up Tharu. However, the Maoists have reiterated their commitment not to repeat such incidents."

The report adds that the journalists in Kailali district had not been able to return to their offices and work freely after the incident.