Two ex-Army chiefs accused of war crimes

- THAKUR SINGH THARU, BANKE

May 12, 2016-

Two former heads of Nepal Army stand accused of serious crimes committed during a decade long war between Maoist rebels and the state. The victims of these cases have come forward to retell their tragedies as the transitional justice bodies, formed nearly 10 years after the peace deal, is recording complaints of war crimes. 

Yuvaraj Giri of Kohalpur-7 says he was captured and tortured by the Army inside Imamnagar Barrack in Rajha, Nepalgunj, in 2004, when former Army General Rookmangud Katawal was in command of the barrack. Giri has charged Katawal of arbitrary detention and torture.

Although Giri had reported the crime to the Human Rights Committee of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, he says, the recommendation for redress and investigation was not heard by the authorities. 

There is also a complaint filed at the Bardiya District Police Office against former Army General Pyar Jung Thapa along with two other officials Ajit Thapa and Ramesh Swar, for shooting dead 10-year-old Rupa Chaudhary on 21 July 2002. Bardiya police, which initially refused to register the case, took the complaint only after the Nepalgunj Appellate Court instructed to investigate into the case. Despite the court order, Rupa’s killing was never investigated.

Besides high-ranking Army officials of the past, several senior Maoist leaders are also accused of crimes like kidnapping and murder that took place during the insurgency.

A police complaint is registered against the then chief of rebel Maoist party for kidnapping and killing Upendra GC, Subash Roka, Gor Bahadur Thapa and Dil Bahadur Khadka of Dang on February 21, 2002. Maoist leaders Khadka Bishwakarma and Bhuwan Chaudhary also face the charges of kidnapping and forced disappearance of Dil Bahadur Khadka and Narayan Sapkota of Kalika in Bardiya. Both these cases were filed at police and courts, but the victims did not receive justice.

Published: 12-05-2016 08:22

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