Dear Kunda Sir
You know what each and every one of us has been through. I am not a smuggler, I never was. I carried the dreams of my father, mother, sisters and brothers to seek my fortune and was passing through Bangkok. But I was arrested at the airport by police when I couldn't offer them US dollars underhand. I was sentenced to life imprisonment and have now spent 17 years here. In that time my grandparents from both sides, my aunts and uncles, have all died. My father died five months ago and my mother sits in the corner of our house and waits for me to come home. I want to see her one last time before she dies, but it is just a dream. My heart is wracked by storms, my mind is in turmoil. There is no one to pour out my soul to, that is why I am writing to you.
I am victimised here, and I am stigmatised back home among my neighbours and relatives. The Nepal Embassy in Bangkok finally lobbied with the prison administration to allow us to call home. But there is no trace of the application we made 12 years ago for a 'royal pardon', the embassy hasn't replied to us. My father even sent a ticket for me to go back to Nepal if I got a pardon, that ticket disappeared long ago. When asked, the embassy replies: "We're not here to help prisoners."
While in prison, I have made a lot of foreign friends. I only studied till Grade 10 in Nepal, but here I have been studying the bible through a correspondence course and have earned advanced diplomas from the US and Australia. I want to pursue the study of theology. I have also started painting and my drawing of Machapuchhre was exhibited inside the prison. Before I die, I want to see the real mountains one last time.
I want to urge our Nepali brothers and sisters to help their fellow-Nepalis when they are in pain or in trouble. And I would like to request the Nepal Government to bring us innocent Nepalis home from the jails here in Thailand.
I am sorry if I have inconvenienced you.
Chandra Kumar Rai