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Sushil-led Government-8

April 2014

Challenges To PM Sushil Koirala

Siddhi B Ranjitkar


Prime Minister Sushil Koirala had been facing the challenges from all sides of the opposition and human rights defenders not following the correct path of building a consensus on the matters concerned to all, and not even consulting with the stakeholders. International human rights organizations had condemned the government of Sushil Koirala for submitting the bill on Truth and Reconciliation Commission with the provision for an amnesty to the criminals whereas the UCPN-Maoist’s members of the parliament had been obstructing the parliament session for arresting their cadres allegedly involved in the murder of Krishna Prasad Adhikari in the Fujel area of the Chitwan district during the conflict period stating the regular court could not take up the conflict era cases. The seven like-minded parties held a meeting to go together for identity-based federal states.


Nepali legislators should reject problematic provisions of the proposed Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) bill introduced in parliament on April 9, 2014, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the International Commission of Jurists said in New York on April 17, 2014. Despite a January 2 directive from the Nepali Supreme Court that the law must meet international legal standards, the bill contains provisions for amnesty that violate international law. In particular, the bill retains language from a 2012 executive ordinance that permitted amnesty for crimes under international law committed during Nepal’s civil war. A landmark Supreme Court ruling rejected the ordinance, and explicitly directed the government to introduce a new bill in compliance with Nepal’s obligations under international law. Amnesty for gross human rights violations, such as those enumerated in the bill, is prohibited by international law. “The Nepali government seems to have simply tabled a mildly reworked version of the 2012 ordinance despite the Supreme Court’s landmark judgment on transitional justice,” said Sam Zarifi, Asia-Pacific regional director at the International Commission of Jurists. “This deliberately undermines the judiciary, and raises serious concerns over the government’s respect for the rule of law in Nepal.”


The human rights organizations reiterated their calls to the Nepali government to implement the Supreme Court’s ruling to:


· Establish a “Truth and Reconciliation Commission” and a “Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappeared Persons”;

· Criminalize the act of enforced disappearance in accordance with the definition set out in the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance and ensure that it is punishable with penalties commensurate with the gravity of the crime;

· Ensure that other serious crimes are made criminal under domestic law, including crimes under international law such as crimes against humanity, in a manner that is consistent with international law;

· Prohibit amnesty for gross human rights violations or crimes under international law;

· Ensure there are no time limits on the prosecution of serious crimes, including all crimes under international law such as enforced disappearance, torture, war crimes, and crimes against humanity;

· Ensure that the composition and structure of the commissions comply with international standards. In particular, there should be a fair vetting system that aims to ensure the impartiality of the commission members;

· Require that necessary legal and institutional measures be taken to enable and ensure the establishment, adequate resource, and maintenance of effective victim and witness protection mechanisms; and

· Establish and require other necessary legal, administrative, institutional, or other arrangements for an effective reparation program. (Source URL:


The main opposition party UCPN-Maoist obstructed the meeting of Legislature-Parliament on April 16, 2014, accusing the government of reviving the wartime cases with the intention of derailing the peace process. At the beginning of the meeting, Maoist-Party leader Dr Baburam Bhattarai expressed concern over the filing of a charge sheet against 13 people at the District Court demanding the punishment of life imprisonment with confiscation of all property of the people involved in the Fujel incident during the decade-long armed conflict in the country. The peace process had not completely ended as the task of forming the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Commission on Enforced Disappearances, political management and social transformation were left to be executed, he said, protesting the government move. He warned of obstructing the House business until the government withdraws the case from the court.  Following the UCPN-Maoist’s protests, Speaker Subash Nemwang announced the postponement of the meeting for an hour. The then Maoist cadres killed Krishna Prasad Adhikari of Fujel, Gorkha on June 6, 2004 when the country was in a state of emergency. The Chitwan Office of Government Attorney few days ago filed a case against 13 people at the District Court on the accusation of their involvement in the killing of Krishna Prasad. (Source:, April 17, 2014)


The UCPN-Maoist announced nationwide protests against the government move to lodge cases against its cadres implicated in the murder of Krishna Prasad Adhikari of Fujel, Gorkha during the conflict period. At the meeting held at the party's office on the morning of April 15, 2014, the UCPN-Maoist decided to demand that the government release those who were falsely implicated and tried for murder. According to chairman of UCPN-Maoist Prachanda’s personal aide Chudamani Khadka, the UCPN-Maoist would hold a corner meeting in Chitwan on April 15, 2014. Similarly, the party would hold a rally and a corner meeting in Gorkha on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 while it would organize nationwide protests against the government move on Thursday, April 17, 2014, added Khadka. (Source: RSS news on, April 16, 2014)


Vice-chairman of CPN-Maoist CP Gajurel said that the preparation made for the local bodies' election was to dodge the federalism. Gajurel arrived in Surkhet after attending the Achham District Convention of the party. He was talking to the media persons on April 15, 2014. He said that the preparation for holding local bodies' election was a regressive attempt of this government to escape from federalism. "Holding the local election before the promulgation of a new constitution will not be practicable," Gajurel said. (Source:, April 16, 2014)


The UCPN-Maoist and the CPN-Maoist had held a sit-in at the District Administration Office, Chitwan since 10:00 am on April 16, 2014, demanding the release of the people arrested on the charge of murdering Krishna Prasad Adhikari of Fujel, Gorkha. The two parties had jointly held the sit-in at the District Administration Office, calling for the immediate release of the people arrested on the murder charge arguing that only the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances should investigate the conflict-era cases. Former coordinator of UCPN-Maoist Chitwan Ghanshyam Dahal said that they would hold sit-in until the noon and then a corner meeting at the District Court. The District Court started recording the statement of two of the arrestees on April 16, 2014. Chhabilal Poudel has been testifying to the court in this connection since Tuesday afternoon, April 15, 2014 and the court planned to conclude recording the statements of the two accused on April 16, 2014. The court would start hearings on whether to remand the arrestees in judicial custody after the conclusion of the recording of statements from them. Twenty advocates including senior advocate Chandeshwar Shrestha and former general secretary of Nepal Bar Association Raman Shrestha were ready to plead on behalf the defendants. (Source:, April 17, 2014)


The Nepali Congress (NC) was accused of intending to push the country back to a conflict reviving the war-era crime cases. Opening the second district conference of CPN-Maoist of the Kalikot district in Kalikot on April 16, 2014, secretary of CPN-Maoist Netra Bikram Chand 'Biplab' said although the 12-point political agreement promised a pro-people constitution, the NC and CPN-UML turned away from the agreement when the situation became easier. (Source:, April 17, 2014)


On Thursday, April 17, 2014, the UCPN-Maoist obstructed the Legislature Parliament meeting for the second consecutive day, demanding the withdrawal of the murder charges against its 13 cadres allegedly committed during the conflict period. On Wednesday also, the UCPN-Maoist lawmakers had obstructed the Parliamentary proceedings over the same issue. The Maoist lawmakers had been obstructing the Parliament meetings over the ongoing prosecution of their cadres at the Chitwan District Court on the charge of a murdering Krishna Prasad Adhikari in 2004. The UCPN-Maoist has been demanding that the government release its cadres arrested on the charge of murder at the earliest. According to the party’s official position, the conflict-era cases should be dealt with only through the TRC. (Source:, April 18, 2014)


Speaking at the Parliament meeting on Thursday, April 17, 2014, Maoist lawmaker Shakti Bahadur Basnet accused the government of serving the interest of undesirable foreign power centers to derail the peace process and push the county back to the conflict period. Lawmaker Basnet also claimed that the various power centers were flexing their muscles to stop the ongoing peace process from reaching a logical end. The Maoist lawmakers also distributed copies of a letter written by Royal Norwegian Embassy in Nepal to the South Asian Trust Chair Kanak Mani Dixit regarding the grant provided for a project called ‘Using Media to promote regional peace and development’. The Maoist claimed that the letter was a proof of how the foreign forces were funding the media to obstruct the peace process in the country. Lawmaker Basnet reiterated that they would not let the parliament run smoothly until and unless the government withdrew cases filed in the Chitwan court against its 13 cadres and released their detained cadres. (Source:, April 18, 2014)


On Thursday, April 17, 2014, the Chitwan District court released two of the 13 accused in the murder case of Krishna Prasad Adhikari of Fujel, Gorkha, on bail. A single bench of Judge Binodmohan Acharya released Chhabilal Poudel, 72 of Fujel-6, Gorkha, and Bhismaraj Poudel, 40, of Ratnanagar-11, Chitwan. They were released following the court management provision of the country code. The court asked them Rs. 20,000 in bail amount from each of the two accused, registrar of the court Bidhyaraj Poudel said. However, the court decided to issue warrant notices against 11 absconding accused, registrar Poudel also spokesperson for the court said.  Krishna Prasad Adhikari was in Ratnanagar, Chitwan to see his grandfather and grandmother after finishing his SLC exam. He was first abducted and killed about nine years ago and the then CPN-Maoist had taken the responsibility for his murder. (Source:, April 18, 2014)


Talking to the reporters after the parliament meeting, UCPN-Maoist Chief Whip Giriraj Mani Pokhrel said, "We agreed to resume the parliament proceedings as there has been a political understanding among the major political parties that no new cases related to the conflict-era will be filed at the court." The main opposition party UCPN-Maoist obstructed the parliament proceedings on Wednesday and Thursday demanding that the government withdraw the charge sheet filed against its 13 cadres accused of killing Adhikari. The House proceedings resumed today (April 18, 2014) after the Chitwan District Court released the Maoist cadres on Thursday (April 17, 2014) and the two largest parties: the Nepali Congress and the CPN-UML reached an understanding with the Maoists to handle all the war-era cases through the proposed the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and the Commission of Inquiry on Disappearances (CID). The Maoist leader further said that the to-be-formed TRC and the CID would deal with all the insurgency-era cases. The government on Friday (April 18, 2014) tabled the Bill on the formation of TRC and CID at the Legislature-Parliament. Minister for Law, Justice, Constituent Assembly (CA) and Parliamentary Affairs Narahari Acharya tabled the Bill at the meeting of the parliament. The bill on the TRC and the CID, which had been registered at the parliament secretariat earlier, had not been tabled in the Parliament due to the obstruction of the House by the UCPN-Maoist after 13 of its cadres were charge-sheeted for their involvement in killing Krishna Prasad Adhikari of Fujel, Gorkha, in 2004. The next parliament meeting is scheduled for Sunday at 2 pm to discuss the contents of the bills. (Source:, April 19, 2014)


The battle over the proposed TRC bills took a new turn on Thursday, April 17, 2014, with lawmakers and pundits questioning the integrity of one of the major critics of the bill and the role of the donor, which has funded his organization. Executive director of South Asia Trust also editor of Himal South Asia and publisher of Himal Khabarpatrika: Kanak Mani Dixit misused the fund to campaign against the ongoing peace process and misused the funds in his disposal without accountability; Royal Norwegian Embassy granted Rs 60 million to the trust, according to the Nepali Congress and Maoist lawmakers. "There has been regular anti-peace activities through the Trust fund which should be investigated," Maoist lawmaker Shakti Basnet said in parliament. The Maoist party cited a project agreement signed by the Embassy and Dixit. As per the agreement, the expected results of the project are "enhanced critical debate and civil activism on regional issues on Nepal and South Asia." The Maoist party has long been accusing Dixit of misusing donor funds to launch a campaign against it. "There should be an investigation: first into the source of funding; second whether the Trust is within the purview to use such funds for whatever it pleases to do; and finally, whether the fund has been properly used. Action needs to be taken against the trust if it's found to have breached the law," said NC lawmaker Amresh Singh. (Source:, Donor funds used without accountability: Lawmakers, April 18, 2014)


In response to the recent media coverage concerning allegations of the use of Norwegian funding given to the Himal South Asia Magazine for the anti-peace activities in Nepal, in a press release issued on April 18, 2014, the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Kathmandu stated: "The Royal Norwegian embassy has not funded any anti-peace activities in Nepal. The embassy supports programs and projects aimed at fostering rural development, renewable energy, human rights, gender equality, democracy, peace and reconciliation in Nepal." It insisted that all Norwegian funding is transparent and made public on the embassy’s website and their partners are registered and have the approval of Nepal’s Social Welfare Council. “We want to be clear that we have no reason to believe that the embassy’s funding to the Himal South Asia magazine has been misused. However, any such allegations are serious, and requires necessary action from our side,” says Norway’s Ambassador to Nepal, Kjell Tormod Pettersen. Norway has been a firm, trusted supporter of Nepal’s peace process from the very beginning, and committed to support the finalization of the new constitution, the press release reads. (Source:, April 19, 2014)


On April 18, 2014, Norwegian Ambassador to Nepal Kjell Tormod Pettersen called on chairman of UCPN-Maoist Prachanda. At the meeting, chairman of UCPN-Maoist Prachanda said that the cooperation provided by the Norwegian government was significant to take forward the country's peace process but their only wish was that this assistance was not misused. The Norwegian ambassador said that he was positive toward chairman Parchanda’s concerns and that their attention was drawn to the 'call attention motion' brought by the UCPN-Maoist in the Legislature-Parliament meeting on Thursday, April 17, 2014. He also said that he was positive lest the assistance provided by his country and embassy was misused. (Source:, April 19, 2014)


Leaders of seven like-minded political parties such as Chairman UCPN-Maoist Prachanda, Chairman of Federal Socialist Party Nepal (FSPN) Ashok Rai, Chairman of Madhesi People’s Rights Forum-Democratic (MPRF-D) Bijay Kumar Gacchedar, Chairman of Madhesi People’s Rights Forum–Nepal (MPRF-Nepal) Upendra Yadav, Chairman of Sadbhavana Party Rajendra Mahato, Chairman of Tarai-Madhes Sadbhavana Party Mahendra Raya Yadav and Iqbal Ahmad Shah of Tarai-Madhes Democratic Party (TMDP) held a meeting at the residence of Chairman Prachanda at Lazimpat on Saturday, April 19, 2014 to build a ‘strategic alliance’ and jointly lobby for their common agenda of the constitution-making, peace process among other things. “We at today’s [Saturday] meeting came up with a unanimous conclusion that forming such an alliance has become necessary, so we decided to expedite the process to give it shape,” FSP-N’s Rai told Republica. “We will jointly work on some specific issues such as constitution-making, peace process and on some agenda for economic and social transformation of the country.” TMDP’s Sah said they proposed the alliance with a view to bring all pro-federalist and progressive forces together and lobby for progressive agenda of the constitution-making process. “We decided to form the alliance as we realized the need for such a force to fight the radical forces and the status quoists,” Shah told Republica. (Source:, April 20, 2014)


Talking to RSS after the meeting of the seven political parties held at the residence of Chairman of UCPN-Maoist Prachanda, General Secretary of MPRF-Democratic said that the leaders agreed to make a single voice to incorporate the concerns raised by the people during People's War, People's Movement, Madhes movement and all other political, cultural and linguistic movements in the new constitution. According to Dev, the like-minded parties in and outside the Constituent Assembly (CA) would forge an alliance to ensure people's concerns, pro-people constitution, and federalism with identity and constitution with federalism. The meeting has also decided to come up with a single voice on formation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and Enforced Disappearances Commission. Likewise, the seven parties would move ahead united for the implementation of the agreement signed with the Madhes-centric political parties during the Madhes Movement. (Source: RSS news on, April 20, 2014)


April 21, 2014

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