3 killed as Maoists attack government office in Nepal

May 28th, 2008 - 6:24 pm ICT by admin  

By Sudeshna Sarkar
Kathmandu, May 28 (IANS) Even as thousands jumped and danced on the streets of Nepal in anticipation of the formal abolition of monarchy and proclamation of a republic, three people were killed and at least six injured in a remote district in the far west when security forces fired to disperse a mob led by Maoists. Police said security forces resorted to firing after a mob attacked the administration office in Dhangadi town in remote Kailali district Wednesday as a sequel to the assault on a journalist earlier by the Maoists.

Lucky Chaudhary, editor of a local publication, Hamar Pahura, was allegedly beaten up by cadres of the Young Communist League (YCL), the strong arm of the Maoists with a reputation for taking the law in their own hands.

Chaudhary, who had been writing against YCL activities, was beaten up when he had gone to the district administration office to lodge a complaint.

On Wednesday, in a sequel to the incident, a mob attacked the administration office and ransacked it, resulting in firing by security forces.

Curfew was clamped in the town, police said.

The violence comes even as the Maoists were forced to agree to pay a compensation of NRS.2 million to the family of a businessman killed by soldiers of the Maoist army, the People’s Liberation Army, inside a barrack under UN supervision.

The murder of trader Ram Hari Shrestha caused a furore, forcing an apology from Maoist chief Prachanda.

Both the Maoists and the government announced the formation of two separate investigations into the murder that severely tarnished the image of the former rebels, who are poised to lead the new government.

The former insurgents’ bid to form a coalition government has run into a deadlock with the other major parties demanding the dissolution of the YCL.

The Maoists, however, have refused to dismantle the YCL, describing it as a political organisation and not an extension of their army.

Last year, the Maoists, who signed a peace pact in 2006 and pledged to renounce violence, came under intense criticism when they killed a journalist in the Terai plains for criticising their activities.

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