DHANGADI, AUGUST 23
It's been six years since the Tikapur incident occurred in the course of an agitation seeking a separate Tharuwan province when seven policemen, including Senior Superintendent of Police Laxman Neupane and a one-and-a-half-year-old child Tek Bahadur Saud, lost their lives in the incident that happened exactly today six years ago.
Regarding the anniversary, Tharu Kalyankarini Sabha Kailali and Tharuhat-Tharuwan Morcha Kailali said they would celebrate the day as 'revolt day'. The Morcha said it would mark the Tikapur Revolt with a rally from Baliya Chowk to Bhalka Chowk in Kailali.
According to the Morcha's Coordinator Laxman Tharu, they will observe a half-an-hour blackout from 8:00pm tomorrow. Likewise, the Morcha has already declared its third phase of agitation by organising different programmes in Maitighar of Kathmandu.
The Morcha has said it has initiated protest programmes in its third phase campaign demanding the withdrawal of all cases filed over the Tikapur incident.
Meanwhile, the victim families are worried they will be deprived of justice.
Prem Singh Bohara of Kanchanpur's Belauri Municipality lost his son Keshav Bohara, a police inspector, in the incident. He lost his second son too a few months ago in a motorbike accident. "I'm worried lest we are cheated," he lamented. "Since the government has agreed to take initiatives to withdraw cases over the carnage and release Resham Chaudhary, we don't know how we will get justice," bemoaned the father.
Six years ago, seven policemen, including a senior officer and a baby, were murdered when a protest turned violent and the protestors attacked policemen in the course of the Tharuhat agitation in Tikapur. The incident witnessed over a month-long curfew in its wake in the district, and 58 persons were charged over the incident.
Resham Chaudhary, one of the main persons held responsible for the incident, went on the run after the incident.
He, however, ran as an MP in the parliamentary elections two years later and got elected. After his election, he surrendered at Kailali District Court.
Though there was heavy pressure back then to decrease punishment to be meted out to Chaudhary, accused of being the mastermind behind the incident, he and 10 others were given life imprisonment amid huge protest raging across the country seeking justice.
The possibility of Chaudhary being freed was slammed shut after the High Court and the Supreme Court too upheld the district court's verdict of life imprisonment for Chaudhary and others.
A version of this article appears in the print on August 24 2021, of The Himalayan Times.