From The Nepali Press
No saying no
Nepal, 12 March
FROM ISSUE #290 (17 MARCH 2006 - 23 MARCH 2006) | TABLE OF CONTENTS
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Bardia-Darbari Tharu shakes his head in frustration as he tries to get Maoist leaders to reveal the whereabouts of his son Keshab Prasad, who was forced to carry militants on his tractor from Motipur on 25 February. Keshab's 90-year-old grandmother Somli remembers rebels promising to return him by afternoon but until today, there is no sign of him. Keshab, 24, was first asked to carry rice but after reaching Jagatiya, he was asked to leave it and transport Maoists. Concerned about his life, he saved a message on his tape recorder and left it with villagers. "I've been forcefully taken to the battle. I may not return alive," were Keshab's last words. Around 5PM, about 500 heavily armed Maoists were seen travelling to Nepalganj on jeeps, trucks and a tractor to attack security forces. The battle lasted five hours but the rebels returned without Keshab. In their desperate search for him, his family met Comrade Bistaar but instead of apologising for dragging their innocent son to war, he slammed the family. "Thousands of people like him have been killed. So why are you only troubled about your son?" He also threatened them not to villagers not to mention the incident to journalists or human rights activists.