2 dozen hurt in clashes, repolling at two centres


Nov 27, 2017-

Sporadic incidents of violence were reported from various places during the first phase of federal parliamentary and provincial assembly elections held in 32 districts on Sunday. 

Security personnel opened fire in Rukum (West) after a ballot box was set ablaze. Violent clashes erupted between the supporters of rival political parties in some districts, while improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were recovered in several places.

Police fire several warning shots into the air to bring the situation under control after a ballot box containing votes under proportional representation category was set ablaze in Nepal Rastriya Secondary School in Aathbiskot Municipality-11. 

Earlier, a ballot box for the federal parliament elections caught fire at Ratna Lower Secondary School in Baphikot Rural Municipality-5. Although the cause of the fire could not be immediately ascertained, police suspect that someone might have poured acid on the ballot box. According to polling officer Nandalal Mahato, there were 250 votes in the box when the incident took place. 

The District Election Office later said there will be re-polling at two polling centres after the ballot papers cast in Sunday’s elections were destroyed. Chief Election Officer for Rukum (West) Kaji Bahadur Rai said the re-election will be held at these centres on December 7. Re-polling will take place only for the House of Representatives election at the Ratna Lower Secondary School polling centre and for the proportional representation category at the Gattasaina polling centre. 

In Jajarkot, more than two dozen people were injured in a clash between cadres of the ruling Nepali Congress and the left alliance—CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Centre)—outside a voting centre in Kushe Rural Municipality-1. 

Chief District Officer Banshi Kumar Acharya said that Nepali Congress (NC) activist Keshav Khadka torched the ballot box. Khadka was taken into police custody. 

Similarly, unidentified groups detonated IEDs in Bajhang, Rukum (West), Jajarkot, Nuwakot, while explosives were recovered in Darchula, Dhading, among other districts. The assailants detonated an IED near the Janata Basic School poll centre at Chhabis Pathivera-4 in Bajhang. The explosives went off in three other places in the district, while a Nepal Army bomb disposal squad defused the explosives recovered in different places.  

There were also reports of minor clashes between rival parties in parts of Dhading, Dolakha, Darchula, Baitadi, Khotang, but officials maintained that the incidents did not affect the election process. 

2 security personnel injured in Siraha attack

SIRAHA: Two security personnel sustained bullet injuries when an unidentified gang shot at them during a security check at Niradana in Siraha district on Sunday.

According to police, constable Mayaram Yadav and Myadi (temporary) police Adarsha Yadav were injured in the incident. The injured were taken to Phul Kumari Mahato Memorial Hospital in Karjanha. They were later airlifted to Kathmandu for treatment, said police. 

Two assailants shot at the victims during security check of vehicles at Kamala Barrage that lies on the border between Siraha and Dhanusha districts. The incident happened at around 3pm. 

(With inputs from our local correspondents)

Published: 27-11-2017 08:25

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