The high-level investigation commission headed by former Supreme Court justice Krishna Jung Rayamajhi has started interrogating former royal ministers.
The commission, formed to recommend necessary punishment to those involved in suppressing the pro-democracy movements, summoned and questioned the vice chairman of the royal cabinet Tulsi Giri, minister Badri Prasad Mandal and assistant minister Niksha Shumsher Rana at Harihar Bhawan today.
According to Himalkhabar.com, during questioning Giri defended himself and said, "I did not do anything to suppress the movement." He said that the reason he presented himself before the commission was because he believed in the rule of law. The government may have made small mistakes during pro-democracy movements in terms of maintaining peace and security, but it never directed security forces to gun people down. He added that he was very sorry for the loss Nepalis had to bear during the movement.
Similarly, Agriculture Minister of the royal government, Badri Prasad Mandal also defended himself and said, The decision to use force was not made by the council of ministers. Former assistant minister Rana said that an assistant minister is not in the cabinet because his responsibility is to work within the ministry, so he cannot be held responsible.
I regret the loss of 21 people during pro-democracy movement, but I also regret that 13,000 Nepalis have lost their lives in the last ten years. If former ministers are to be blamed for 21 deaths, who will take the responsibility of the 13,000 dead Nepalis? Rana asked.
The commission has added the names of other vice chairman of the royal cabinet Kritinidhi Bista, ministers Radhakrishna Mainali, Keshar Bahadur Bista and Durga Pokhrel to the earlier list of 13 to be summoned by the commission for interrogation.