Students attack police posts, offices torched
Rautahat, December 21
A day after a student died in police firing here, agitated students in Rautahat today picketed and attacked police posts at different places in the district, while demonstrations have been reported from other districts as well.
In Rautahat, they set fire to a waiting lounge and a two-wheeler bearing Indian number plate on the premises of the border police post of Bankul.
In Katahariya, irate students pulled down the compound wall of Area Police Office. Similarly, in Ganga Pipra, they picketed the local police post for about four hours and burnt tyres and held demonstration from early in the morning itself.
Yesterday, 18-year-old Shesh Tabarej Alam of Tejapakad-1 had died in police firing during a clash between police and agitators of United Democratic Madhesi Front at BP Chowk in Gaur.
The body of the 10th grader of Gaur-based Juddha Higher Secondary School has been kept at the district hospital, and according to Chief District Officer Narahari Baral, initiatives are on to hand the body over to his kin by completing the formality for compensation.
United Democratic Madhesi Front and United Muslim Struggle Alliance held a press conference today, seeking martyr’s status for the deceased student and putting forward three other demands.
They have said the body will be received only after the government forms a committee to probe the incident, takes action against the police officer involved in the death and provides government job to one of the members of the victim’s family.
Meanwhile, demonstrations continued on the third day of the ‘final phase of agitation’ launched by the UDMF at different places of Gaur today.
In view of the possibility of demonstrations going out of hand, the administration clamped indefinite curfew from 10:00am toda,y but the same was lifted from 6:00pm to 10:00am tomorrow.
Earlier too, the administration had lifted curfew from 6:00am today after putting it in effect from 4:00pm yesterday in Gaur and its vicinity after UDMF demonstrations turned violent.
Agitating UDMF cadres in Sarlahi today set fire to the Malangawa-based Drinking Water Office and Women Development Office, protesting the arrest of their leader.
Computer sets, documents and furniture such as chairs and cupboards were gutted.
They had set the water office ablaze on their way from the district police office, where they had reached to picket it in the afternoon protesting the arrest of Federal Socialist Forum district Chairperson Ashok Yadav.
They also hurled a petrol bomb at the district court.
Police had fired a few rounds in the air and lobbed tear gas shells after the protest turned violent.
DSP Ramesh Kumar Khadka of Sarlahi said police had to resort to force after the situation went out of control.
Earlier, police had picked up FSF Chief Yadav for vandalism at the passport section of the District Administration Office yesterday afternoon.
Yadav, along with nine other persons, including Sadbhawana Chairperson Pramod Sah and Tarai Madhesh Sadbhawana Party Cchair Kaushal Kishor Raya were released in the evening on the condition that they would launch their agitation peacefully.
He was, however, arrested while he was heading for an interview at the local FM radio station in Malangawa at 8:00pm.
According to DSP Khadka, the arrested leader has been remanded to custody for investigation after seeking date from the court today.
In Parsa, Madhesi Alliance Parsa today held a warning rally in Birgunj protesting police ‘highhandedness’ in suppressing peaceful agitations in Parsa and Rautahat.
The rally, with participants carrying bamboo sticks had concluded into a corner meeting after starting from Birgunj and taking a round of the bazaar.
In Nawalparasi, Parasi area that was open for the past two weeks shut down again from today. Due to the bandh of the UDMF, life in Parasi and the vicinity has been affected.
There was, however, no effect of the bandh on the highway and Nawalpur area.