Written by Ramesh Irugalbandara
25 Aug, 2015 | 12:37 pm
At least nine people were killed in Nepal on Monday August 24 when demonstrators attacked police with spears, knives, axes and scythes during a protest against proposals for administrative reform in the Himalayan country.
One police officer died when protesters surrounded him and set him ablaze, Home Minister Bam Dev Gautam told parliament. A district official gave the death toll as nine, but media reports said as many as 20 people – most of them police – may have died. Authorities imposed a curfew and mobilised the army on Monday to quell protests in the town of Tikapur in Kailali district, which is close to the border with India.
On Tuesday August 25, in a rare military deployment, soldiers patrolled the small border town in Nepal’s far west in response to the violence.
Thousands of people were protesting against a government-backed plan to include their area in a hilly province, part of a regional overhaul envisaged in a new federal constitution expected to be finalised this month. The protesters, mainly from ethnic Tharu community, are demanding a separate province comprising eight districts in the southwestern plains for themselves.
The government and major political parties hope that the new constitution, which divides the nation into seven federal states, will boost economic development in Nepal, which is still reeling from two devastating earthquakes that killed 8,900 people this year. However, different ethnic groups have been protesting against the plan and demanding regional autonomy. Four demonstrators have died in the past two weeks in violent protests across Nepal.
Raj Kumar Shrestha, chief administrator of Kailali district that includes Tikapur, said protesters had defied a curfew and had begun vandalising government buildings. Shrestha declined to elaborate, but told state television separately that the protesters had attacked the police with an array of sharp-edged weapons. He said nine dead comprised six police and three protesters had been killed.
At least 53 people were killed in similar protests in Nepal eight years ago, in the worst violence that followed the end of a civil war in 2006.
Nine dead as protests in Nepal turn violent (VIDEO)Read more : http://goo.gl/6UbnDU
Posted by Newsfirst.lk on Tuesday, August 25, 2015
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