TRC fails to decide on term extension

Kathmandu, January 25

A meeting of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission today concluded without taking any decision on whether to seek extension of its term.

Opinions were divided among its five members, namely, Chairman Surya Kiran Gurung and members Madhabi Bhatta, Leela Udasi, Srikrishna Subedi and Manchala Jha.

It is learnt that Chairman Gurung and Bhatta and Jha were in favour of seeking at least one year’s term extension as per the Act. On the other hand,   Subedi opined that it should not be extended as the transitional justice body had become incapable of resolving conflict era cases; while Udasi stated that even if the term extension is sought, it should be with certain conditions.

Gurung cautioned that the international community would come to the fore if Nepali stakeholders left the process half-way.

The TRC, along with the Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons, was set up in February 2015 to resolve all conflict-era rights violation cases within two years. Their terms expire on February 9.

As per Section 38 (2) of the CIEDP and TRC Act, the government can extend their tenure by one year if they seek extension clarifying why they failed to complete their tasks in time.

Talking to The Himalayan Times, TRC member Bhatta said she spoke in favour of term extension as more than 60,000 insurgency-era rights violation complaints were awaiting TRC investigation.

She, however, confirmed that the body today fell short of finding unanimous view on term extension. According to her, the next meeting of TRC on Sunday will further discuss the matter and take necessary decision.