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Madhesis intensify protests

Sunday, October 25th, 2015

Cadres of the agitating Madhesi political parties have burnt down public vehicles, fuel, fertiliser and other essential commodities in several parts of the Tarai on Sunday.

In what appears as a strategy to choke people already hit hard by an acute fuel crisis, Madhesi protesters stopped public vehicles, took fuel out of them and burnt it down. In Saptari, even an ambulance was robbed of fuel by Madhesi protesters.

Madhesi protesters burnt down fertiliser, fruits and vegetables apart from fuel in Mahottari, Siraha, Rautahat and Parsa districts as well.

Madhesi Front, an alliance of four different Madhes-based parties, has been on the warpath for over the last two months. They have demanded amendments to the recently-promulgated constitution which they think fails to ensure their proportional representation in all state organs.

Although the government has initiated the process to amend the constitution to address some of the front’s demands, protests have not ended. After Dasain festival, Madhesi parties seem to have intensified their protests.

In Kathmandu, talks between representatives of the government and Madhesi parties are underway. The new constitution will be amended when both sides reach a deal.

Madhesi parties have also continued blocking border points, giving India an excuse to impose an economic blockade against Nepal. Last week Nepal’s Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa had requested Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ease supply across the border, but fuel crisis continues unabated.

As India shows no sign of lifting the blockade, Nepali authorities are now preparing to import fuel from China. Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) has said that China has agreed to provide 1.3 million litres of subsidised fuel through Kerung. The first cache of subsidised fuel is expected to ease fuel crisis in Nepal for a few weeks.

NOC officials are also negotiating a deal to commercially import fuel from China.


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12 Responses to “Madhesis intensify protests”

  1. namah on Says:

    nation heading downwards

  2. dgupta on Says:

    China is a real super power while India is still at the ladder of bottom of international society. For god’s sake we have more than one neighbour!

  3. X Marks on Says:

    #backoffindia #comeinChina

  4. Uttam B. Khatri, Silver Spring, MD. USA on Says:

    India’s Interference in Nepal

    Ever since India was decolonized by British in 1947, the Indian political leaders have been dreaming of imposing neocolonialism in Nepal. Mr. Nehru, because of India being newly independent itself of British colonial rule, could not venture to colonize Nepal. He was probably being cautious of the World Opinion at the time, although Nehru was strongly advised by the then Indian Home Minister Patel in an adventure to merge Nepal into India. Indian Government must stop big brother attitude towards Nepal.

    Two things must have stopped the Indians from the foolish act, one, their own just achieved independence and other probable important reason was almost 100,000 Gorkhas were serving in the British Indian Army at that time. If Indians had made the mistake of taking over Nepal, the Gorkhas from Nepal would certainly rebel against the plan in order to save their own country. That is a reasonable argument.

    Because of Nepal’s landlocked situation on three side, King Tribhuvan had no choice other than going into self exile in India and play an active role in getting rid of Rana regime in 1950. Nepali Congress played important role in bringing democracy in Nepal. Nehru took advantage of the change in the situation and Indian influence increased in Nepal’s politics in subsequent years.

    Later, King Mahendra had to face lot of criticism and resistance from India when he consolidated power and ruled the country. King Mahendra was criticized for banning multi party system of democracy in 1960. However, his actions also shows that he was a Nationalist too. He would not let the Indian Government interfere in Nepal’s internal affairs. He had envisioned the intention and the policy of Indian political leaders towards Nepal. This is the reality although some people might take it as pro Monarchy statement.

    Mahendra established diplomatic relation with many countries of the world, played important role in non-aligned countries movement. During his reign, Nepal played significant role at the United Nations, even got elected as a member in UN Security Council. King Mahendra developed a very close relation with communist China. He had China built important industries like Brick and tile industry, shoe factory, just to name a few. More importantly, he closed Indian military check posts that was installed in Nepal after the political change of 1950. The construction of East West Highway is also Mahendra’s idea. He started building the Highway. Another important contribution of Mahendra is, he encouraged the migration of hill people to tarai in order to balance the population. Otherwise, the demographic, social and economic condition in different areas of the country would be even bigger adverse.

    King Mahendra was aware of the intentions of Indian political leaders towards Nepal. That was the reason he had balanced Nepal’s foreign policy with regard to of her neighbors, China and India. The King knew that Nepal, although landlocked by India on three sides must have road link with China as well. He negotiated with China to build a road connecting Kathmandu with Chinese (Tibetan) border at Kodari.

    The Indian Government made such hue and cry and pressured Nepal to cancel the construction. But the King did not budge, he had the road built. Ironically, when the Indian media question Mahendra why he was having communist China build the road linking Kathmandu, he answered, “Communism does not travel by Taxi cab”.

    King Mahendra was so frustrated with Indian leaders at some point and time that he is even said to have written a letter to Chairman Mao of China that he would “rather be a Communist than surrender to Indian hegemony and political pressure”.

    Nepali people now should realize how important this road was. In fact, Nepal Government should have built more such road linking with the Chinese border. The Government apparently did not pay adequate attention toward this important link with China after the political changes of 1990. Had Nepal developed roads linking with Tibetan region of China, Nepali people would not be suffering from the inhuman economic blockade India has imposed to Nepal, currently. Those people who blame the Kings for the backwardness of the country should also ponder who did what in Nepal.

    In view of the hardship, the people have been suffering during this years important Dasain, Tihar festival, Nepalis should understand the reality of undeclared Indian economic blocked to Nepal. The K.P. Oli Government must not surrender with Modi Government of India. The blockade has caused immense hardship with regard to transportation, food, medicine, cooking fuel and what not. Modi Government’s undeclared economic blockade deserves condemnation. This is not only a terrible act against next neighbor but is also a inhuman behavior as well as a crime according to international law.

    Previous Governmenst of Nepal, whether it is Panchayat, Nepali Congress, CPN, Maoist or whether led by Baburam Bhattarai, Pushpa Kamal Dahal or CPN- ML criticize, protest and condemn Indian hegemony on issues when they are not in power. However, when they run the Government, they negotiate or even get sold for power and money and do whatever India wants them to do or even sign agreement, treaty in India’s interest.

    Nepali people hope Oli’s Government will not do the same thing and negotiate with India. Mr. K. P. Oli must prove he could not be instructed and dictated on Indian terms and conditions as far as Nepal and Nepali people’s interest is concerned. Madhesis are also Nepalis. India’s interference is just an excuse in the name of those people who are instigated and paid by India. Oli’s Government should never forget that Nepal is a Sovereign and Independent country. Nepal should open new road links with China ASAP and challenge India for their hegemony. India can not stop Nepal in opening new trade route with China so that India can monopolize trade with Nepal and impose blockade whenever she wants. How could India try to dictate Nepal in writing her Constitution? Is Nepal one their State?

    Uttam B. Khatri
    Silver Spring

  5. Marjolaine on Says:

    What happened to dassain diplomacy?

  6. Ravi Raj Kaur on Says:

    Surprised at indian media?

    Maybe the reason for looser is big country small nation? Hindi drama will not do it we have that from there….

    Possible solutions
    amend the freaking constitution or just say so to win time
    2. go to the international court of Justice in The Hague, Bolivia did it they won the access to the sea from Chile

  7. Anonymous on Says:

    I call this banda kartas act as terrorism. If I were griha mantri I would have ordered AFP to shoot these terrorist on sight. You can’t force others to live in fear and not let them go about their daily business because you are not happy with something.

  8. Chilarai on Says:

    This is sheer shameless ingratitude from Nepal. One third of Nepal’s population works, studies and lives in India without any problems (12 million). Why doesn’t Nepal take care of the Madhesi minority problem and allow peace to come first? Do you want Indian truckers to risk their lives because Nepal has chosen to discriminate against their minorities? Yes, go ahead and ask China for oil. They will be happy to give you all you need after transporting it all across Tibet for little cost. Nepal needs to learn the hard way.

  9. rohit on Says:

    do not treat own madhesi people as second class citizen. why would a poor indian truck driver carry goods to nepal risking his life? it is a law and order situation after all. want to import fuel from china do so. but settling the madhesi problem should be the top priority.

  10. Parr on Says:

    The resentment felt by Madhesi is not going to go away with the snap of a finger…decades of neglect and a practical lack of basic facilities and opportunities have caused this. Kathmandu is so very disconnected from the rest of the country.
    The point is even if oil was sourced from China (which is highly impractical, expensive and unlikely) what about the Madhesi?Are they just going to wake up one morning and decide to stop trying to be valued citizens of Nepal?
    No. The issue needs to be dealt with through lengthy and difficult talks and negotiations….the people can no longer be controlled with an army.
    Why is this so important? Because there is no Nepal without the Madhesi….. Where does nepal’s food come from, nevermind oil. The country is small and weak enough, let alone if it lost half of its population!
    Ignoring the Madhesi would simply lead to a civil war where Madhesi would block roads and all goods from entering nepal and Kathmandu…..the country and capital would be starved and the consequences would be far worse then the current situation.

  11. namah on Says:

    @Parr: do madhesis have all the rights of the Terai region? What percentage of terai consists of people who will willingly call themselves madhesis? I say willingly because the marwari community is quite demur about joining these protests…so are Nepalis of Indian origin from non-Bihari states, i.e. Punjab, etc.

    You talk cheaply of civil war. First talk about peace. You talk about basic facilities. I live in Chaunni, Nepal. Next to the richest of the rich. I still have to get water delivered and endure load sheddings, not to mention stray dogs, cattle, pot-holed roads and crazy motorcyclists.

    Please stop being so ‘Please feel sorry for me, I am a neglected Madhesi, but can write in English and have internet access’ whining. I am getting quite sick and tired of these elitists who are nothing but keyboard warriors, yet claim to have the pulse of the people.

    I agree madhesi have been neglected. there is no other way to say it. I agree. and feel your pain. I am part madhesi myself! But there must be a way to address these concerns WITHOUT raising a whole new set of public policy flaws.

    I propose a national conversation through town hall type meetings where madhesis have a platform to express their displeasure and we all – nepalis – get together to find acceptable, doable and workable solutions.

    Thank you and peace to all.

  12. edmandu on Says:

    sure, we take care of Madhesi minority if they want to be nepali .

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