Who will look after ‘the living martyr’ after we are gone?

Kavre, October 6

Though festivals like Dashain and Tihar bring happiness to most people, they only bring pain to the families of those injured during the janaandolan in Kavre.

Krishnaman Kayastha and his wife Mira have been distraught ever since their only son was injured in the second people’s agitation and has since been bed-ridden.

“Who can control their tears when they see their child lying in bed unconscious for years when others are celebrating?” asked the mother.

“Dashain brings others happiness but in our case it’s different — it brings us pain as it brings to our notice the sharp contrast between him and others in the neighbourhood,” she added.

Further, the shattered mother also doubted that her son would ever be the same again. “I’ve seen him like this for years now and as he doesn’t laugh or speak, I’ve almost lost hope to see him speak and do normal things as others do,” she said, trying to hold back her tears.

Kayastha was critically injured after being hit by a bullet in police firing at Tindobato in Banepa on April 9, 2006 during the second people’s movement.

An eighth grader at Banepa-based Bidhyasagar School, he was then 15 years old. Though his physical injuries were cured, he is yet to regain consciousness. His limbs don’t function well and he can’t take solid food.

Four other youths of Kavre also lost their lives at different places during the agitation.

While Bhimsen Dahal of Nala and Sagun Tamrakar of Panauti were killed in Pokhara and Kalanki in Kathmandu respectively, Shibahari Kunwar of Bhimkhoriwas killed in Banepa and Sunil Kumar Lama of Nagre Gagarche was killed in Jorpati. Around 40 persons were injured in Kavre during the same period.

“What is eating us away is the worry as to who will take care of him after us as doctors from Nepal and abroad have said nothing can be done in his case,” she said, further bemoaning the leaders’ failure to implement the statute.

“They somehow wrote the constitution but it has yet to be implemented, which has undermined my son’s sacrifice and the sacrifice of many others who lost their lives for the cause,” lamented his father Krishnaman, expressing frustration.

Further, Mukesh’s parents have asked the government to declare him a ‘living martyr’.

Various governments following the agitation have provided 1.6 million rupees for treatment of the jana-andolan victim and waived off around Rs 700,000 loan they had taken from banks and financial institutions.

Similarly, the government has been providing Rs 10,000 monthly to Mukesh’s family to support him. In addition, the government has also been funding the family to hire a health worker to attend to Mukesh since four years ago.

Around two years ago, a foundation was set up in Banepa in Mukesh’s name.