Home minister vows to punish ‘secessionists’

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 1, 2018-

After fierce criticism from all quarters including members of the ruling party, the government has vowed to take action against “secessionists” trying to destabilise the country.

Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa on Sunday said the government would take action against those plotting to disintegrate the country. Without naming, he hinted at CK Raut, who has been campaigning for Free Madhes.

Thapa’s statement comes in response to increasing concerns including from ruling party leaders over a rise of forces making secessionist remarks. Claiming that the government curbed violence in the last six months, Home Minister Thapa said the administration was committed to maintaining law and order. “Secessionists attempting to create instability in the country won’t be spared,” Thapa told the reporters at Biratnagar Airport on Sunday. Fresh activities of Raut including his “offensive” remarks raised eyebrows in the public.

The Raut-led Alliance for Independent Madhes (AIM) organised protest programmes in different parts of the Tarai on September 19 when the country observed the Constitution Day.

Even senior leaders of the ruling Nepal Communist party (NCP) have started raising serious concerns against such activities and the government’s inaction.

Senior NCP leader Madhav Kumar Nepal, addressing the last meeting of the budget session of the House of Representatives, on Thursday wondered if the country had a home minister in place. He lashed out at the government for not taking action against those challenging nationalism and geographical integrity.

Former prime minister Nepal said different bodies of the state had failed to punish persons openly challenging the country’s territorial integrity. Amid the criticism, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has accused the Supreme Court of obstructing the government in taking action against the secessionists and those promoting violence.

Referring to the SC’s ruling on the re-arrests of Khadga Bahadur Bishwakarma, spokesperson for the Netra Bikram Chand-led Communist Party of Nepal that used violence to disturb elections last year, Oli said those promoting violence threatened to use weapons to topple the government while the court warned the government against arresting them.

“We are also wondering what has gone wrong. Some organs of the state reach the court’s door to release those involved in murder,” Oli said in an interview with New York-based journalist Surya Thapa, without clarifying.

The prime minister, however, claimed that the government elected by a large majority of popular votes would not remain mute spectator but would take action.

“This elected government will do the needful to safeguard territorial integrity and sovereignty of the country besides defending national interest and independence,” Oli said.

Published: 01-10-2018 07:33

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