Rajbiraj, November 22
At least three people were killed in police firing and 25 demonstrators of the agitating United Madhesi Democratic Front were hurt in a clash between protesters and police along Bharadaha-Rupani road in Saptari last night.
Two demonstrators were killed in police firing on the spot at Ruapani and Bhardaha last night, whereas a local succumbed to bullet injuries when police opened fire during the clashes today.
UDMF activists — Birendra Ram, 18, of Bathanaha and Nageshwor Yadav, 28, of Jamunimadhepura VDC — were killed in police firing last night, said District Police Office Saptari DSP Narayan Prasad Chimoriya.
According to Chimoriya, critically injured Dilip Sah, 30, of Hatiya, Rajbiraj, breathed his last while being taken to Dharan for treatment on Sunday evening. Sah, who was observing the demonstration this afternoon from the roof of his house, was hit by a bullet in his head when police opened fire. His five-year-old daughter Muskan also sustained minor injuries and was undergoing treatment in a local health facility.
More than 20 police personnel were also hurt in clashes.
UDMF, meanwhile, claimed that four persons were killed in police firing. According to a United Madhesi Democratic Front press statement, Shiva Shankar Das was also killed in addition to the three mentioned above.
The last night clash occurred when police tried to stop the demonstrators from obstructing vehicular movement along the road section.
Rajesh Kumar Yadav of Portaha, Chhutaharu Sah of Diman and six others, who were critically injured, were undergoing treatment in BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences in Dharan, while others are being treated in local health facilities.
According to sources, hundreds of agitating activists stopped police personnel from clearing the road.
Deputy Superintendent of Police Chimoriya said, “The demonstrators were carrying traditional weapons, catapults and petrol bombs and we had to open fire in self-defence.”
Saptari District Administration Office has clamped an indefinite curfew in Bhardaha, Rupani and district headquarters Rajbiraj until further notice after the situation turned tense after police firing. The curfew was clamped at 6:00am after an emergency meeting of the district security committee headed by Chief District Officer Anil Kumar Thakur.
However, the front loyalists demonstrated throughout the day at Rajbiraj, Rupani and Bhardaha defying curfew.
They set ablaze a police beat located at Rupanimode. They also torched a jeep belonging to DPO. The security personnel had to fire hundreds of tear gas shells, rubber bullets and blank rounds to disperse the demonstrators.
The demonstrators also torched an APF base camp in Rajbiraj. A motorbike got completely damaged when the demonstrators put set it ablaze.
They also damaged a section of the bridge over the Sundari River at Barmajhiya along the East West Highway, affecting the flow of traffic.
A version of this article appears in print on November 23, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.
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