Nepal: Disqualified fighters occupy party office

Disqualified fighters wage war against party —  Capture Maoist offices in Surkhet ; Say their protest in last stage

HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE,  2012-03-22

Disqualified Maoist fighters protesting

SURKHET: Maoist PLA fighters, who were disqualified during a verification carried out by the United Nations Mission in Nepal, today besieged offices of Maoist district committee and Bheri Karnali state committee in Surkhet to protest party leadership’s deliberate neglect of duty to pay attention to their plight.

About three dozen disqualified fighters reached the offices at around 3pm today and barred party leaders and cadres from entering. “We will not allow anyone to enter the office until our demands are met,” said Naradmani Poudel, one of the disqualified fighters. “These offices belong to us from today and anyone trying to enter forcefully will face the consequences.” The disqualified combatants also seized a car and two motorcycles belonging to Dashrathpur-based 6th Division Cantonment.

“We held talks with the party, submitted memorandum and took other peaceful measures to draw the party’s attention to our plight, but all went in vain. So, we are now in the final stage of our protest,” said Poudel. “The party coaxed us into joining the force when it needed us during the war, and now it is trying to welsh on its commitment. For us, the war is not over, and we are fighting for our rights,” added Poudel as he bristled with anger.

Khadga Bahadur Ramtel, secretary of the disqualified fighters for the mid-western region said, “The party made false promises and ruined our future. It’s high time we launched another war against the party to make it guarantee our future.” He warned of intensifying protests if the party did not ensure basic facilities to them.

Local administration has deployed police in the area where the Maoist offices are located.

The disqualified fighters involved in today’s incident are said to be close to the faction led by Maoist Vice-chairman Mohan Baidhya that is fighting its own battle against the establishment side in the centre.

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eKantipur, March 24, 2012

SURKHET, MAR 24 -

The disqualified PLA combatants have taken over the UCPN (Maoist) district party office in Surkhet and seized vehicles of the PLA sixth division camp to press their demand for relief fund on par with the retiree combatants.

Accusing the party leadership and the PLA commanders of ignoring their demand, the former combatants, who were disqualified during the UN verification, started occupying the party offices and seizing vehicles in Surkhet from Thursday.

We were compelled to take such action as the party leadership and the PLA commanders did not heed our demand,” said Naradmani Poudel, a member of the struggle committee of the disqualified combatants on Friday.

“We went to the district party office to keep our demand as per the suggestion of our PLA commanders. As our demand was ignored, we decided to take over the office,” he said.

The agitating combatants have said that they would not vacate the occupied party office, nor release the seized vehicles unless the party leaders and the PLA commanders address their demand.

Meanwhile, the former combatants, who chose voluntary retirement during the PLA regrouping, have expressed solidarity to the struggle of their disqualified comrades. They have said that the disqualified combatants are the responsibility of both the Maoist party and the state.

“Their demand is valid and the Maoist party and the government should address it,” said Thammar Bista, a retired PLA deputy commander.

Posted on: 2012-03-24

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