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Unrest in Madhes

Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

Madhesi front cadres burnt copies of the draft constitution in Birgunj on Tuesday. Photo: Suresh Bidari

Suresh Bidari

The Madhesi front has imposed a Madhes banda on Tuesday in an attempt to prevent the Constituent Assembly (CA) members from collecting public feedback on the draft constitution.

The front has been staging protest rallies in all districts of the Tarai since early Tuesday morning, disrupting programs being attended by the CA members to collect people’s suggestions on the draft.

The front has not only blocked the East-West highway but also all major roads in the Tarai. Only ambulances, fire engines and vehicles of diplomatic missions have been allowed to ply. Protestors have burnt copies of major daily newspapers like Kantipur, Nagarik and Annapurna Post for not covering their protests previously.


Madhesi Front cadres burn newspapers for not ‘covering their previous day’s protests with priority’ in Birgunj. Photo: Suresh Bidari

Pradip Yadav, the Parsa district committee chair of Federal Socialist Party Nepal, a key member of the Madhesi front, said the banda was called to protest ‘police’s brutality against them’ on Monday. On the first of the two days allocated for the CA members to collect public feedback on the draft, cadres of the Madhesi front had clashed with police as they tried to attack top political leaders like the UCPN (M) Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal and the CPN (UML) leader Madhav Kumar Nepal.

“Police used force to disrupt our peaceful protests,” he said.

In major towns of the Tarai, protestors have burnt copies of the draft constitution vowing to not let it be passed unless their demands are addressed.

The Madhesi front is against the draft constitution mainly because it has deferred the task of naming and demarcating federal provinces. The front has demanded that names and boundaries of federal provinces be determined before the new constitution is promulgated. They think the constitution sans names and boundaries of federal provinces is a ploy to sabotage federalism.

The Hindu Royalist RPP-N has also burnt copies of the draft constitution for a different reason. The RPP-N is against secularism and has been demanding a Hindu nation. In Hetauda where the RPP-N has been staging protesting rallies since Monday, All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) President Ganesh Thapa has sustained an injury to his head during a clash with police. He is the RPP-N Chair Kamal Thapa’s brother, and he was chosen by the party as a CA member under a Proportional Representation (PR) quota.



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One Response to “Unrest in Madhes”

  1. Radha krishna Deo on Says:

    The mass perception of the people considerably differ from the originally proposed constitutional draft in home (both in hill and madesh) as well as in abroad , the key leaders should understand the mass psychology of people one the issues raised by them. the issues are appropriation of words , citizenship, demarcations of states, religion and constitutional bodies and their qualification.
    here important is peace and integration of people in federalism for fast growth of Nation not the views of political parties heads that is why the key leaders have been opposed at the destinations. Hence draft should be reviewed and corrected to the satisfaction of people.

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