Nepal: ‘Disqualified’ PLA combatants lay siege to UCPN-M headquarters

[Revolutionary soldiers of the now-disbanded–(mission not accomplished)– People’s Liberation Army, continue to loudly refuse to quietly go away and disappear. — Frontlines ed.]

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HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE

Say they will stay put until party addresses their woes

KATHMANDU, 29 November 2012: Hundreds of ‘disqualified’ PLA fighters have been laying siege to Unified CPN-Maoist headquarters in Paris Danda, Koteshwor, since yesterday, demanding that the party address their concerns at the earliest. Security personnel in huge numbers have been deployed to avert any confrontation and damage to the party office.

The ‘disqualified’ fighters, who prefer to call themselves ‘unverified’, today claimed that they have taken the party headquarters under their control. Lenin Bista, who is leading the ‘disqualified’ fighters, said the combatants were ‘not verified in a proper way’ and that they were forced to leave cantonments with only bus fares in their pockets.

The move is the latest one in their series of protests the disqualified fighters have organised in the past. They said the party turned a blind eye to their plight and concerns despite their pressure campaigns several times.

UCPN-M Vice-chairman Baburam Bhattarai-led government, after several rounds of talks with them, had decided to allocate Rs 600 million in order to give Rs 2 lakh to each of the disqualified fighters. The move was challenged in the Supreme Court and the court in the first week of November issued a stay order, forcing the government to hold back.

Bista claimed that as many as 200 former combatants have been staying put outside the party headquarters while some 150 are on the office premises (inside the gate). The fighters had yesterday padlocked the party office but unlocked it at 3:00pm today following a mutual understanding with party leadership. “We have pitched tents outside the headquarters and surviving on beaten rice and dalmoth (a ready made snack made of golden gram or red lentils). This is the survival technique the party taught us during the time of war,” said Bista. Continue reading