THT 10 years ago: Govt ‘positive’ on MJF desire for talks

Kathmandu, April 19, 2007

The government team formed to hold talks with agitating groups and organisationstoday replied to a letter sent by the Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum (MJF), which has, among others, demanded dissolving the Constituency Delimitation Commission (CDC) until a political consensus was reached with the MJF and Janajatis.

The MJF had in the letter sent today expressed its willingness to sit for talks. The government team has asked the MJF to call off the three-day Tarai bandh it has called from tomorrow, to create an environment conducive to holding talks.

The team coordinator and Minister for Peace and Reconstruction, Ramchandra Poudel, said the government has taken positively the forum’s willingness to sit for talks and the issues raised by it.

Poudel said the government would guarantee security for the forum’s talks team members.

The MJF has demanded that the government dissolve the CDC, form a highlevel judicial commission to probe incidents that occurred during the Tarai agitation, provide compensation to families of those killed and free medical treatment for the injured.

Making clear the government’s position on the CDC, the government team said the government has no legal authority to disown the Commission’s recommendations.

But a way out could be found based on a political consensus, the government letter to the forum stated.

Prior to sending the reply, Poudel held consultations with leaders of political parties in the government.

Lifting ban on tiger trade ‘bad idea’

Nepal should not agree to lift a ban on the sale of tiger parts as proposed by a Chinese delegation during an international tiger symposium, experts said here today.

“Nepal should show serious concern and intervene on the issue of legalisation of trade and commercial farming of tigers,” Steven Broad of the Traffic International (TI) told this daily.

The UK-based TI coordinates with the worldwide traffic network, established to monitor trade in wild plants and animals.

An international tiger symposium is going on here and a group of Chinese delegation is lobbying to have tiger trade legalised as illegal farming of tigers and selling tiger parts to produce medicine and wine is a big business there.

Though China has a few wild tigers, it has over 5,000 tigers in captive breeding, according to a study done by TI. “Tiger parts from such breeding places are supplied to factories for medicines and wines while some luxury restaurants even serve tiger meat,” says the TI report.

Broad said that the lifting of ban on tiger trade in China is going to make a direct impact on Nepal’s tiger conservation, adding, “If Nepal fails to convince the world that the open trade is a threat, Nepal’s tigers will see a very bleak future.” The lifting of the ban is going to make a catastrophe.