16 hurt as protesters clash with police

  • constitution amendment bill fallout

Dec 17, 2016-

At least 16 people were injured when supporters of the parties protesting against the constitution amendment bill clashed with police in Gulmi on Friday.

The protesters had padlocked the District Administration Office, the District Development Committee Office, the District Agricultural Development Office and the District Forest Office, among others, in Tamghas, the district headquarters of Gulmi, at 9am protesting against the constitution amendment bill registered by the government in Parliament. 

The police had tried to break the padlocks put by the agitators on the offices.

Police resorted to baton charge after protesters obstructed the authorities in their action. The enraged locals and cadres hurled stones at the security personnel. Police fired warning shots and lobbed two dozen teargas shells to take the situation under control. Superintendent of Police Bhola Rawal said four policemen were injured in the clash. Twelve protesters including lawmaker Kamala Bishwokarma were also hurt. They are receiving care at local hospitals and Lumbini Medical College, Palpa.

The protesters torched a police beat in Deurali and a vehicle parked at the DDC office. They also vandalised the DAO and the DDC offices after the police interfered with them. Police managed to open the DAO at 2:30pm.

Bhuwan Prasad Shrestha, coordinator of the protest programme, accused the police of using excessive force to incite violence in their peaceful protest. Lawmaker Bishwokarma demanded the government punish CDO Krishna Prasad Dhungana for ordering the police to swing into action.

Parties including the main opposition CPN-UML have been protesting in the district for the past 17 days against the constitution amendment bill that proposes splitting Province 5. Normal life in Banke, Bardiya, Dang, Pyuthan, Palpa and Rolpa districts remained affected on Friday due to the strike enforced to press the government to roll back its decision to take Hill districts off Province 5. The protesters also vandalised some vehicles for defying the banda.

Published: 17-12-2016 08:52

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