From today’s Republica.
KATHMANDU, Dec 17: Nepali Congress (NC) cadres across the country resorted to vandalism Saturday to protest the death of Chitwan Chairman of the Tarun Dal Shiva Poudel, who was critically injured in the December 6 attack at Bharatpur Jail.
Cadres of the NC and its sister wings suddenly took to the streets after news of Poudel´s death at the Neuro Hospital in Kathmandu early in the morning spread across the country.
They stopped vehicular movement without prior notice, and dozens of vehicles were torched or vandalized across the country. Rajdhani Daily journalist Madhu Jung Pandey was manhandled by banda enforcers at Balaju in the afternoon.
Tire burnings, which had stopped since the indefinite Maoist strike in May, 2010 following vehement protests due to the health hazard, also returned to Kathmandu as major crossroads in the city remained covered in dark smoke.
Poudel, who had been in judicial custody for alleged involvement in the murder of CPN(UML)-affiliated Youth Association of Nepal cadre Sanjay Lama, was injured along withy four other inmates in the early morning attack at the prison on December 6 by a ´rival gang´.
Poudel was brought to Kathmandu on Wednesday for further treatment after his condition failed to improve at Bharatpur Medical College where he was operated on by senior neurosurgeon Dr Upendra Devkota. Dr Devkota was flown to Chitwan on the very day of the attack.
Meanwhile, an emergency meeting of the NC Central Working Committee held at party President Sushil Koirala´s residence at Maharajgunj, denounced the death and demanded the formation of a judicial commission to probe the incident, declaration of Poudel as a martyr, compensation for his family, withdrawal of ´fake´ murder cases against Poudel, Rai and others, and action against those involved in the attack.
NC has also called a ´peaceful Nepal banda´ for Monday and formed its own five-member probe under General Secretary Krishna Sitoula.
The family of the deceased has accused the government of framing the Tarun Dal leader in fake murder charges and also implicated NC Chitwan President Bikash Koirala in the attack.
Our Chitwan correspondent reports that Tarun Dal cadres vandalized Bharatpur Airport in the afternoon for conducting flights in defiance of their banda call. They even tried to vandalize a Buddha Air plane preparing to take off, causing disruption of the flight for a while.
Meanwhile, our correspondents has reported the vandalization of five vehicles in Pokhara and three in Dharan.
Protestors also vandalized several vehicles in the Valley. They ransacked a car (Ba. 6 Cha 5811) in Patan and vandalized at least four taxis (Ba. 1 Ja 5515, Ba. 6 Cha 1824, Ba. 1 Ja 830, Ba. 1 Ja 7504) in different parts of Lalitpur district.
Judicial panel to probe Poudel´s death
The government on Saturday formed a three-member judicial commission, led by former Supreme Court (SC) justice Mohan Sitaula, to investigate the attack on Tarun Dal leader Shiva Prasad Poudel and his subsequent death at Neuro Hospital at Bansbari Saturday morning.
Tarun Dal is youth wing of the Nepali Congress (NC).
A meeting of the cabinet on Saturday evening took a decision to this effect. The panel, which includes Joint Government Attorney Krsihan Prasad Poudel and Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Bigyan Raj Sharma, will submit its report within a week.
The government also decided to give Rs 1 million to the family of Poudel.
The Chitwan president of Tarun Dal, Poudel succumbed to the injuries he received in an attack inside Bharatpur jail on December 6. Similarly, the government has requested the NC to withdraw its general strike slated for Monday.
In an emergency meeting held at party President Sushil Koirala´s residence immediately after doctors declared Poudel dead, the NC decided to call a general strike for Monday.