TRC wants report on deaths, loss of property

- DEWAN RAI, Kathmandu
As figures of casualties and damage recorded bythe government and non-government organisations varysignificantly, the TRC plans to collate them and come up with figures closest to reality

Dec 26, 2015-The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) has asked the concerned government agencies and political parties to furnish detailed report of casualties and property damage that occurred as a direct result of the decade long insurgency.

The commission has written to the political parties representing the Parliament, Home Ministry, Nepal Police, Nepal Army, Armed Police Force and National Investigation Department, asking for the detailed report.The figures of casualties and damage recorded by the government and non-government organisations vary significantly. For instance, the government has received complaints of 17,886 deaths between 1996 and 2006. However, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Informal Sector Service Centre (Insec) have both recorded 13,246 deaths. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), meanwhile, have recorded around 900 complaints related to death during the conflict period.

Considering the varying figures of casualties and property damage, the TRC has decided to ascertain the exact figures. According to TRC Chairman Surya Kiran Gurung, the commission has sought the figures of deaths, disabilities, displaced, and property damage.

“We believe all institutions and political parties have kept the record,” said Gurung. “We want to match them with other figures recorded by various agencies and try to come up with accurate figures.”

There is also a difference in the number of enfroced disappearances. The NHRC has had received 3,444 complaints of disappearances during the conflict period.

However, many of them were released and some found dead later. Currently, the commission has record of around 789 missing individuals.

A report of National Network of Families of Disappeared and Missing, on the other hand, has a record of around 1,350 disappeared individuals while Insec puts the number of disappeared persons at 930. Similarly, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has listed 1,361 persons as missing and the Peace Ministry 1,530 persons.

“Once we receive the actual data from the concerned authorities, we will verify it and then call for complaints from the victims,” said Gurung.The quality data to be provided by the agencies will be contested. Rights lawyer Santosh Sigdel argued that there is no segregated data of those killed during theconflict. “The question is whether we categorise those killed in battlefield and those in crossfire as conflict

victims,” he said.

The issue of displacedand claims of property damage are being debated. The government has almost 80,000 complaints of internally displaced civilians. Of them, the government has verified only 25,000 cases.

Besides, there are also cases related to disability, abduction, torture and single women, among others.“We will collect all sort of information from all sources to work out on figures closest to reality,” said Gurung.


Published: 26-12-2015 08:30

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