Kathmandu, June 5, 2009
The rift within the Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum (MJF) over joining the UML-led government reached a crescendo today, splitting the party into two groups. One is being led by chairman Upendra Yadav and the other by parliamentary party leader Bijay Kumar Gachhadar.
Organising a press meet today, Yadav said an emergency meeting of the party, which was held this morning, had expelled Gachhadar and six other leaders from the party. Yadav also said the MJF had withdrawn its support to the government.
The MJF plans to organise a bandh in the Tarai on June 8 to protest “the conspiracy against the MJF”. He also claimed that of the 53 lawmakers, he enjoyed the support of 28. Along with Gachhadar, the MJF expelled Sarat Singh Bhandari, Jitendra Narayan Dev, Rameshwor Raya Yadav, Ram Janam Chaudhari, Upendra Kumar Jha and Rameshwor Goit, accusing them of indulging in anti-party activities.
They had also been blamed for working against the spirit of the Madhes movement. “We would like to urge other leaders, who supported Gachhadar, to come back to the party,” Yadav added.
Meanwhile, organising a separate press meet, Gachhadar said that the party’s decision to expel him and six other leaders was against the party’s statute. He reasoned that the central committee meeting was not convened officially.
Sobhraj makes use of political fluidity
Kathmandu, June 5, 2009
International serial-killer Charles Gurumukh Sobhraj, who has been languishing in jail here for the last six years, seems to take advantage of the political fluidity in Nepal. Consider this: After the Maoists emerged as the single largest party in last year’s Constituent Assembly (CA) polls, Sobhraj appointed Maoist CA member Khimlal Devkota’s wife Laxmi as his lawyer.
She defended him on the murder case in the Supreme Court. Now, with the Maoists no longer in power, he has opted for Ram Prasad Shrestha, who is known for his leaning towards the ruling UML.
Yesterday, Shrestha pleaded in the Patan Appellate Court, seeking Sobhraj’s release on the fake passport case. Advocates Shakuntala Thapa, Laxmi Sharma and Rambandhu Sharma completed the high-profile criminal’s team of legal eagles.
Despite the battery of legal aid, the court slapped a one-year jail term and imposed a fine of Rs 2,000 on him. “He either seeks legal help from prominent lawyers or from those who are close to the ruling party,” one of his legal counsels told The Himalayan Times. Shortly after he was arrested, he had evinced interest to appoint prominent lawyers like Shambhu Thapa and Sushil Panta. But, he failed in his design since Panta had assumed the Office of the Attorney General by then.
A version of this article appears in print on June 06, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.