Revision of TRC guidelines sought

Kathmandu, August 26

Conflict Victims National Society has filed an application at Truth and Reconciliation Commission seeking revision of the latter’s recently endorsed working procedure.

CVNS Secretary Gyanendra Raj Aran today submitted a letter to TRC Chairman Surya Kiran Gurung stating that the working procedure was against the principle of transitional justice and several of its provisions were designed to give amnesty to the perpetrators of heinous crimes committed during the decade-long Maoist insurgency.

Talking to The Himalayan Times, Aran said that if the investigations were carried out as per the procedure, most of the insurgency-era rights violation cases would be put on hold and thousands of victims would be denied justice.

“The working procedure regarding putting war-era cases in disposition is controversial as well as illegal,” Aran said.

According to him, while seeking complaints from the conflict victims, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in April had claimed that it would accept the complaints even without mentioning the name of the complainant.

The transitional justice body had stated that it would record complaints even through telephones.

But, as per the guidelines, complaints can be put on hold on several grounds, including lack of evidence, inadequate details, use of coercive tactics to force resignation, involvement in insurgency.

It stated that complaints relating to threats, psychological torture and extortion would not be considered for further investigation.

In his letter, Aran categorically demanded that at least nine clauses of the guidelines be scrapped. He also sought the original copy of the minute of the decision that endorsed the guidelines.

TRC member Madhabi Bhatta told The Himalayan Times that TRC today received an application from Aran, seeking revision of some of the provisions of the guidelines.

She also said that a meeting of members of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, including Chairman Gurung has been called for August 26 to discuss necessary amendment to the guidelines.