Siddhartha highway remains shut

Palpa, February 10:

Even though the Maoists have called off the week-long Nepal bandh, vehicular movement has not resumed along the Siddhartha Highway because roadblocks placed along the road - in the Dhovan area of the Butwal-Tansen road section and Bartung-Syangja road section - have not been removed.

The Maoists have placed boulders in the middle of the road in many places along the Kerabari-Dovan road section of the highway. Due to the obstructions, member of the National Human Rights Commission, Sudip Pathak, returned to the capital in a helicopter today.

Vehicles have not headed for Tansen, Pokhara and Baglung because roadblocks have been placed in Waling and along the Bartung-Syangja road section of the highway.

Meanwhile, locals of Basantapur, Palpa, said frequent cross-fires between security forces and the Maoists has been continuing in the area since last Tuesday.