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Nepal Update No.18: The games that Politicians Play

 

Note no. 149                           04.04.2002

by Dr. S. Chandrasekharan

Prime minister Deuba’s position is unenviable.  The counter insurgency operations against the Maoist Terrorists are not going according to the plan and expectations.  In what should have been an easy passage, he experienced considerable difficulties in getting the emergency extended and in return had to promise other political leaders that he is amenable to a revision of the constitution.  The septuagenarians within his own party instead of quitting politics or take an advisory role, make every effort to embarrass the Prime minister.  With tourist inflow declining, the economy is in a bad state and added to this is the increasing expenditure on counter insurgency operations.  The UN-sponsored Nepal development Report of 2001 gives a grim picture of Nepal and says that "debt servicing and increasing debt expenditures are exhausting the resources available for improving rural conditions."  A frustrated Deuba remarked " I have been criticised at both times: They criticise when I held talks with the Maoists and they are criticising me now for mobilising the army.  It is sheer injustice meted out against me."

Deuba is right.  He is not being given enough political space by his own Party men, the Palace and the opposition  even to make an attempt to set things right.  His visit to India with all the hype and expectations back home and proper and correct protocol in India became in the end an "invisible official visit."  The only silver lining was that the long pending issue over the renewal of the 1996 Nepal-India Trade Treaty was over and came into effect in March with both India and Nepal reaching an understanding on some of the contentious issues like value-added norms to some items and the export of four items which India claimed to have come under ‘surge’ net.

The leading Communist Parties of Nepal merge: After intense negotiations for more than a year and a half, the two leading communist parties of Nepal, the UML and the ML finally merged in the first  week of  February.  It was four years ago that a faction of the CPN-UML led by Bam Dev Gautam split from the party and formed CPN (ML).  One of the major causes for the split was the ratification of the Mahakali treaty by a two thirds majority of the Parliament on September 20, 1996.  The ML made two tough demands- one, the opening up of the Mahakali treaty for scrutiny and two,restructuring of the entire party system after unification.  It is learnt that the UML has conceded both the demands in the run up to the unification.

The Mahakali treaty was an integrated one covering the Sharda Barrage, the Tanakpur barrage and the Pancheswar High Dam project.  When the project was agreed, it was hailed as a break through as no meaningful agreement for sharing of waters for the mutual benefit of both countries had been signed since the Gandak agreement in 1959.  In the meantime Nepal had gone through many political changes and it was thought that with the ushering of democracy, attitudes would change.  But it has not been so.

Here is a lesson for India.  The UML leader Madhav Nepal is a shrewd politician and understands that Nepal’s economic well being depends on Indian purchase of power generated by Nepal.  Yet he has conceded the revision of treaty for the merger of the breakaway party.  Though water is the main asset for Nepal waiting to be exploited, there appears to be no immediate prospect of Nepal exploiting its resources for mutual benefit. India should not in the near or a medium term expect power from Nepal and Nepal’s power should not be factored into its energy policy for the next decade.  On the other hand, Bhutan has been more willing to share power and in the process enrich itself.  This needs to be pursued further.

Nepal once again has begun an exercise to regionalise the water resources’ issue and as expected NGOs of South Asian region are joining the chorus.  More than 200 representatives from various non governmental organisations met on Feb. 26 to discuss issues and create a common vision for sustainable development of water resources.  Prime minister Deuba opened the forum and called on the world community to help Nepal develop water resources and harness hydro power potential.  It is suspected that Bangladesh was the back room facilitator in organising the forum and regionalise the issue.

In a parallel development officials of water resources ministries of Bhutan, Bangladesh, Pakistan and India met in Delhi on March 8-9 to exploit the Arun river so that the project likely to be supported by the ADB could become "the first river in the South Asian region" to generate power for sub regional use.  India in our view should be wary of such sweet looking projects which ultimately would be politicised.   Power from Arun River is not going to be cheap either as Nepal is said to expect over 1200 dollars per Kilowatt and Nepal should be allowed to feel free to sell power to any country and not necessarily to India.

G.P.Koirala playing ‘games’ again: Last year Koirala floated a concept of "broader democratic alliance" supposedly to steer the nation through various problems facing the country.  As head of the ruling Nepali Congress party, he could achieve the same end by interacting with Prime minister Deuba on a day to day basis and ensure that policies of the government reflect an overall consensus of the whole party.  Instead he has gone over the head of his own party men and convened a meeting of leaders of other political parties like RPP ( Rashtriya Praja Tantra Party, CPN ( UML), NSP ( Nepal Sadbhavana party).  He declared that he was looking for a democratic alliance on the basis of four issues-Constitution, monarchy, democracy and human rights and the alliance should do four things again- Avoid political instability, constitutional reforms, economic reforms and social reforms.

Why does Koirala have to go over the head of Prime minister Deuba and seek alliance for constitutional reforms? In our view it is too early to look for constitutional reforms when the present Constitution has not been fully tested yet.  It will open the flood gates of demands which would go from declaring Nepal a secular state to one of abolition of Constitutional monarchy.  Does Deuba need these additional problems when he has enough on his hands? Some protagonists of amendment claim that amendments to Constitution are necessary to meet the Maoist challenge which is crippling the country. This reason appears to be the thin end of the wedge! 

Deuba’s official visit to India-Correct protocol but no warmth: It is said that India and Nepal have "special relations" transcending the political boundaries.  But it takes both the parties to feel that the relationship is special.  The Indian media as usual was busy with more ‘newsy’ subjects like POTA, Gujarat riots etc than the visit of a leader of a small but an important country in every respect to India.  Prior to the visit Deuba had done his home work and expressed the points he would raise with the Indian government.  These included

* To seek India’s help to stop the assistance and support the Maoists get from the Indian side of the border.

* Prevent inundation of some Nepali villages in Banke and Rupandehi districts on account of barrages built across the border in India.

* To expedite the review of 1950 treaty of peace and friendship.

* To expedite the border demarcation process.  Six years have passed since a joint committee was formed to carry out the demarcation process of 1800km long border.

* Early operation of broad gauge rail service for the operation of a dry container port at Birgunj.

* Exploring new potentialities for water resources and hydro power development and speedy implementation of past agreements.

* India’s help for speedy resolution of the Bhutanese refugee problem.

A joint statement issued by both government on the issues is given as Appendix II.

On the question of the Maoist problem and support from across the border from PWG and MCC of India- there is no doubt that support does exist.  The open border with corrupt and inefficient customs and check post officials on both sides makes it easy for the terrorist elements to have a free play right along the border.  India too has a genuine complaint that the border is being used by Jehadis from Pakistan who use the border for bringing in terrorists, arms, ammunition, forged currency and the deadly RDX.  This is something both the countries will have to look for greater interaction and have a free and frank exchange.

On the question of inundation, it has been a perennial problem with both countries not taking the other into confidence in building water works along the border.  This mutual distrust continues even after three decades and no end seems to be in sight.  In the case of India water works is a state subject and Nepal refuses to deal with the States.  The centre on other hand does not even come to know of the works detrimental to the other side are being carried out until a formal complaint is made by Nepal.  Similarly the states themselves have a lot to complain of the small barrages and water works being carried out in Nepal which they will have to route through the centre.  The local officials on both sides do meet and the institutional frame work for interaction form both sides has broken down. This needs to be renewed.

The most serious grievance of Nepal appears to be the revision of the Indo Nepal treaty. In one of our earlier updates we have stressed that Nepal could justifiably feel frustrated and humiliated on some of the security provisions of the Indo Nepal Treaty.  The security provisions are observed more in breach than in observance by both sides.  For e.g. India did not keep Nepal informed when the Indian army was mobilised along the Pakistan border and LOC after the Dec. 12 attack on the Parliament. India did not consult Nepal before closing the air routes to Pakistan on the eve of the SAARC summit.  Nepal is poised to take the service of US army for training their service personnel in combating the Maoist terrorism.  Was India consulted?.  The list could go on.  The point to be made is that the security provisions in the treaty have become anachronistic and need a thorough review.

Maoist Activities. List of Maoist activities for the period is given in Appendix I.  What is to be noted is that the Maoist terrorists have become bolder and more brutal during this period.  In an incident similar to the Godhra incident, terrorists stopped a night bus plying from Kathmandu to Birgunj, locked the bus doors from outside and threw petrol bombs inside.  Some of the bodies were charred to such an extent that no identification could be made. The terrorists have also started routinely using land mines to ambush the security forces.  An airport in far eastern region at Taplejung was attacked.  Despite claims to the contrary, the counter insurgency operations have had little effect on the Maoists who appear to indulge in incidents all over the country.  Meantime, the Army Chief took an unusual step in blaming the politicians, government ministers and law makers in taking the country to ruin in the last 12 years.  He said in a graduating ceremony of the cadets " The deteriorating situation of the country over the last few years has now reached a critical point  . It is imperative to ask here, who led the country to this (sorry) situation? Was this situation brought about by the Royal Army or misgovernment?"

It is surprising that there has not been any strong protest by the people or their leaders over the army chief’s comments. Such a statement from a Chief could not have come without the acquiescence from the higher authorities.  To say the least, this does not augur well for the future of democracy in Nepal.

Appendix I:

Date:   Incidents

January:

27:    Terrorists shot dead Dagal Sen Limbu, a Convention Representative of the Nepali Congress, at his home in Mauna Budhuk VDC-6.

In Kavre they throttled former head constable Tej Bahadur Karki, 56, at his home in Mahendra Jyoti VDC-5.

Shiva Singh Saud, a resident of Alital VDC-5 in Dadeldhura, died after being beaten up by the terrorists.

28:    Four policemen were killed when a land mine laid by the terrorists exploded in Kailali district.

In Dhading state the terrorists blew up another repeater tower of the Nepal Telecommunication Corporation located on a hill top of Kampur VDC

29:     In Chitwan, Suspected terrorists targeted the Coca-Cola bottling plant by a powerful explosion in Bharatpur.

Terrorists shot at Assistant Sub-Inspector of Police, Bir Bahadur Budha Aer, in Bhri Gaon bazaar. The terrorists also exploded a socket bomb in the bazaar.

30:     The terrorists killed two more civilians and injured another in Mahendranagar and Kailali districts.

The terrorists attacked the army barrack and district police headquarters in Bhojpur. They also attacked Taplejung airport and Bhojpur without inflicting any casualties.

31:    Three "banner bombs" were hung by the terrorists in Banepa, Kavreplanchowk district, which were later defused by the bomb disposal team.

Two policemen, Police Inspector Govinda Poudel and Assistant Sub-Inspector Khil Bahadur Adhikari, died in a landmine blast laid by terrorists on the busy Prithvi Highway. Seven policemen sustained serious injuries at Ritthepani village of Malpang VDC.

February:

1:    In Dolkha district a 12-year-old boy was severely injured in an ambush laid by the terrorists in Jhyaku VDC.

3:   In Syangja, a group of armed terrorists in military uniform ransacked property worth over 100,000 rupees from a house of an ex-army man Dal Bahadur Gharti at Chandi Kalika village of Putali Bazaar.

In Solukhumbu, the terrorists exploded socket bombs targeting the Lukla airport.No body was hurt in the incident though some windowpanes of the airport tower were shattered due to the explosion.

 A group of terrorists beat Kedar Sahani to death in Hajariya village of Sarlahi district and seven others sustained injuries in the incident. The terrorists shot dead an activist of the ruling Nepali Congress Party Punya Sahani and injured four others in Sarlahi.

5:     In the bloodiest attack the terrorists attacked a Bhakundebeshi area police station in Khanalthok VDC of Kavre district, leaving over 16 policemen dead, including an inspector with socket bombs.  The terrorists also looted all arms and ammunition from the post.  They were there to ensure safety of Japanese and Nepali workers in the construction of Banepa-Bardibas highway.

A civilian died in an armed attack in Tikapur. Army bomb disposal units deactivated banner bombs placed by terrorists at Suryabinayak and Byasi tol in Bhaktapur.

6:   In Kailali, the terrorists blew up a two-storey house of Dev Raj pathak, Nepali Congress Convention member, with a powerful pressure cooker bomb in Dhangadhi Municipality-5.

8:    The terrorists exploded a bomb at the residence of N.P. Saud, State Minister for Education and Sports in Maheliya village, Kanchanpur district leaving it partially damaged.

In Surkhet the terrorists set off a pressure cooker bomb in the building of District Development Committee (DDC) leaving it partially damaged. They also exploded a  bomb at the DAO in Gaur, Rautahat district.

12:    The terrorists set ablaze an office building of rural housing company in Dhanewa of Nawalparasi.

13:    Two "banner bombs" were hung by the terrorists near a water tank at Sole and over the bridge of Malekhu River of Dhading.

In Parbat, the terrorists bludgeoned Tarak Bahadur Kunwar, a local of Pangrang VDC-7.

The terrorists killed two civilians in Paachthar and Siraha districts.

They also set ablaze a government vehicle owned by the Agriculture Research Center at Belachapi.

In Jhapa, the terrorists exploded a socket bomb in the house of a local businessman, Subas Chandra Sanghai, in Birtamod.

The terrorists killed an ex-army man, Tek Bahadur Guragain, in Nagani VDC of Paanchthar and ward member of Pipara Prabi VDC-6, Juman Chaudhary in Siraha.

14:    Five army men sustained injuries in two separate landmine blasts in Nuwakot and Bajhang districts. Three soldiers sustained injuries at Jiling of Nuwakot after a landmine went off suddenly while defusing a "banner bomb" hung by the terrorists there.

Two more soldiers were injured in a terrorist-laid landmine explosion at Malum of Bajhang.

They killed a civilian and injured another at a village in Kanchanpur.

In Kaski, the terrorists looted eight kilos of gold ornaments from individuals and banks.

15:    Nearly a dozen people, including a cop, were injured when a powerful bomb exploded on the first floor of the three-storeyed  Land Revenue Office at Kalanki.

The terrorists planted a banner bomb in Nuwakot. Two soldiers were injured when a booby-trap set by terrorists went off in Bardia during a patrol.

They shot dead one Bhanu Dhungana in Shantipur village of Ilam district.

In Parbat district, the terrorists  shot and seriously injured a secretary of Deurali VDC, Laxmi Prasad Upadhyay..

A banner bomb to destroy a suspension bridge at Kuringhat between Gorkha and Dhading districts planted by the terrorists was later defused by the army.

16:    Four policemen were killed and seven injured when the terrorists attacked Lalbandi police post in Sarlahi district.

17:    In Mangalsen, the district headquarters of Achham and the near by Sanfebagar airport, 142 people were killed by the terrorists. They also looted Rs. 2 million from Mangalsen bank.

In Achham, they had destroyed the government offices, including the office of the Deputy Superintendent of PoliceThe terrorists looted all the arms and ammunition from the barracks of the Royal Nepal Army.

19:  Banner bombs and socket bombs were laid by the terrorists at public places in Bankatta of Nawalparasi, Dibya Nagar of Chitwan and Aruwawang area of Gorkha district.

The terrorists used two-bucket bombs and 15 kg explosives in preparing an ambush at Chitre of Singha area of Myagdi.

20:     The terrorists attacked the Jimuwa police post located along the Pokhara-Baglung highway and killed one policeman and looted the communications sets. The terrorists also looted Rs. 150,000 and jewellery from the Rastriya Banijya Bank located at Lalbandhi.

21:    The terrorists looted property worth Rs. 200,000 from the house of Resham Bhandari, Nepali Congress Chairman of Constituency No-3 at Uihari VDC-9. They set ablaze a vehicle owned by the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) at Gurgai village of Saudiyar VDC.

At the Guthi Corporation Office in Bhaktapur bombs were planted. One solider was injured when a group of terrorists threw stones at him even as he was trying to defuse a bomb.

Thirty-four policemen were killed in a terrorist attack on a police outpost at Sitalpati in SalyanA group of terrorists hurled a home-made bomb at Biyan of Murali-Bhanjyang Village Development Committee (VDC).

A bridge at Ranaura, about 10 kilometres west of Butwal was partially damaged by a country-made bomb blast. The terrorists had also hurled a bomb at the Ranger Post, near the bridge.

Terrorists in Rautahat district set ablaze the house of the Chairman of Tejapakad VDC in the district. A group of terrorists looted more than Rs. 30 million from British Gorkha Welfare Office in Khotang Bazar.

22:    Five persons, including an eight-year-old girl, were charred to death when the terrorists hurled petrol bombs on a bus in Chitwan.

In Biratnagar a group of terrorists shot at a primary-level teacher, identified as Rewat Tumbahamphe, at Angjugi village of Kerabari VDC-6 in Morang.

A powerful bomb exploded at the premises of Birgunj Tax Office located in the middle of the city.

One person was seriously injured when a bomb planted by the terrorists exploded at Mitra Park

A two-day nationwide general strike was called by the terrorists. A policeman Daya Ram Shrestha of Hatiya VDC-3, Makwanpur district died instantly and another sustained serious injury in an ambush set by the terrorists in the headquarters of Dolakha district, Charikot..

In Jumla the terrorists attempted to set ablaze a building of the Mugu District Development Committee in Gamgadi.

A group of terrorists murdered Laxman Yadav-40 at Bhutahi-Paterwa, at the northeast of Dhanusha district. In Banke district a group of terorists murdered Rambaran Yadav, a farmer of Sonpur village.

In another incident, Kulbhushan Sharma, 22, was severely assaulted by the terrorists with sharp weapons at Janakpur Municipality-4. In Bardia district the rebels severely beat up and injured Dhan Singh Pariyar, a cadre of Nepali Congress at Dalla of Surya Patuka VDC.

The terrorists planted a country-made bomb in Magargadi VDC of the district.

23:    The terrorists hurled explosives in the western district of Dhading, and set ablaze an office building in the eastern hill district of Bhojpur.

The terrorists severely beat up an ex-Nepal army man in Bhimapur VDC of Bardia district. They also assaulted a teacher at local primary school of Daulatpur VDC.

The terrorists have set ablaze the branch office of Agriculture Development Office, at Dingla bazaar of Bhojpur district.

A group of terrorists in Krishnapur VDC-7 of Kanchanpur district hacked 25-year-old Nirmal Ojha to death. The terrorists also abducted two civilians from Raniyapur VDC-1 of Banke.

In Banke, the terrorists severely beat up two farmers, Chetram Radh and Baburam Radh. A group of around 60 terrorists destroyed three buildings of the Danda Pakhar-based police training centre.

A child in the Tal Dompho area of Bhaktapur district sustained minor injuries when a suspicious packet supposedly left behind by the terrorists blasted.

The terrorists threw four bombs near the District Police Office in Diktel VDC and also a few more bombs which exploded in the nearby forest.

Two policemen were seriously wounded after the rebels attacked a Sankhuwasabha-based police post.

24 :   Seven policemen, including an Inspector of the Armed Police Force (APF), were injured after a ‘‘pressure-cooker’’ bomb buried by the rebels exploded near Gohare Chautara of Bandipur VDC-6 on the Pokhara-Damauli section of the Prithvi Highway.

National martial arts champion and army veteran Man Bahadur Lama was murdered by terrorists in Manakamana in Nuwakot.

26:    The terrorists killed a rural health worker, identified as Indra Bahadur Tamang, in Shakhupati VDC, in Kavre

27:    The terrorists killed two activists of the ruling Nepali Congress party, Shyam and Thule Thakuri at a village in Kavre.

28:   In Surkhet, terrorists set all documents of a local Agriculture Development Bank on fire at Chhinchu VDC. They also bombed a vacant police station in the same VDC.

In Biratnagar the terrorists killed Ambar Bahadur Fambo, Nepali Congress cadre and former district-level Vice-Chairman of government-formed Squatters’ Problem Resolution Commission in Tehrathum district.

March:

1:   Three police personnel including two officers died in an encounter with the terrorists in a jungle between Shankarpur VDC and Dekhalbhuli VDC of Kanchanpur district.

The terrorists have confessed to the murder of  3 civil servants in Tribhuvan Municipality.

2:    In Biratnagar, a student in a remote Siddhkali VDC in Sankhuwasabha died while two others sustained injuries when a crude bomb reportedly hidden by the terrorists went off in the school premises.

In Surkhet, a group of terrorists shot Bir Bahadur Singh, former Raniban VDC Chairman in Dailekh.

The terrorists destroyed Lord Shiva’s temple in Chhaya Chhetra VDC about 12 kilometres away from Khalanga, the district headquarters of Salyan.

3:    In Dang, the rebels hacked Basant Lamsal to death at his home at Tribhuvan Municipality-6.

In Syangja a group of terrorists shot dead Nepali Congress cadre Dewan Singh Rana at Mirdi of Waling Municipality.

The terrorists rebel-aligned students put pressure on the schools to close for two consecutive days in a bid to push their demands.

In Dang the armed-terrorists shot Taranath Yogi, 45, who was a member of the management committee of a higher secondary school at the VDC.

6:   A group of suspected rebels hacked a civilian, identified as Kedarnath Prasain, to death at his home in Govindapur VDC in Morang.

A head constable was killed in an encounter with the terrorists at Omgadhi of Jumla district.

20:    Security personnel (15 policeman and 5 army) were injured when their vehicle was ambushed in Barbote of Ganeshthan-4, 10 km east of headquarters Bidur .

The security forces seized some guns in Sindhuli, Pyuthan and Memeng of Paanchthar and explosives in Rolpa.

Ex-Indian army Ram Bahadur Singh Thakuri of Banagau of Salbariya-1 of Dang district was brutally killed by the terrorists.

In Dang district, K. P. Ghimire, said that the terrorists looted a radio set, a watch and 22,000 rupees in cash from the house of a resident named Thakuri. who died after half an hour of the Maoist attack.

The Maoists  bombed a house of a civilian in Tribhuwannagar Municipality-3 of Dang district. A group of 25-30 terrorists bombed Shekhar Sharma’s house. The 3-storey house was unoccupied during the incident.

In Bardia district terrorists kidnapped a policeman, Prakash Dahit Chaudhary from Area Police Office of Rajapur. when he was returning to the office from his home in Jodhipur of Nayagaon VDC.

9:    The terrorists bombed and destroyed the 132 KV Transmission Line Control Room in the Chandaura Sub-station of Western Transmission Grid of Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).

In Bhojpur, terrorists kidnapped former chairman of Tiwari Bhanjyang Village Development Committee (VDC), Dharma Prasad Tiwari.

In Syangja district the armed terrorists kidnapped, warned and released 5 people including the chairman of Chapakot Village Development Committee (VDC) in the western part of the district.

10 :    Security forces gunned down three Terrorists in different parts of Surkhet district and one each in Pranbung of Panchthar district and Durgauli of Kailali district.

An army personnel was killed in an encounter after the security forces found a group of terrorists planning to lay an ambush in Argal of Baglung district.

In another incident, the terrorists killed Uma Chaudhary of Harwara of Dang district hacking him with an axe while he was fast asleep. Another civilian called Madhu Shah of Dharauni was admitted to Ghorahi Hospital after he was brutally beaten by the terrorists.

The terrorists attacked policemen Indra Bahadur Ranabhat and Sheshkant Subedi who were deployed at the Manakamana Temple of Gorkha district.

Ram Mani Gyawali, 55, who was a convention member of the party and chairman of the Kerunga VDC in Arghakhanchi district was hacked by a group of terrorists.

The terrorists abducted policeman Prakash Dahit Chaudhary while returning to his duty in Rajapur from his home in Nayagaon village.

The terrorist hacked Vice-Chairman of Manikhel VDC, Prem Bahadur Bista, to death in Dadeldhura district of the far-western hill region.

In another incident in Dang, a group of terrorists killed Lachhuman Thapa, owner of a bus (Na 2 Kha 4148), in Kavre VDC.

19:     Eight policemen were killed in separate incidents of exchange of fire between the security forces and terrorists in Kailali, Dailekh and several other districts..

Seven policemen were killed while 11 others sustained injuries, four of them seriously, after a large number of armed terrorists attacked an area police station in Lamki bazaar situated along the East-West Highway.

The terrorists attacked two  police outposts in Sukhad and Chaumala of the same district.

20:    In another incident in Dailekh, one policeman was killed while another one sustained serious injury in a landmine blast at Narayan Municipality-6, the district headquarters.

Two soldiers of the Royal Nepal Army were injured in Masot Khola area of Dang where the terrorists attacked them with crude bombs.

In Rautahat district, a group of suspected terrorists shot dead a Nepali Congress cadre, Habib Ansari, 40, at Prempur Gonahi VDC-9.

21:    An Assistant Sub-Inspector of Police sustained injury at Bungchung village of Kumpur VDC in Dhading when a group of terrorists hurled socket bombs at a police van on its patrol.

The terrorists have held up vehicles at Satbanjh area of the district. The district headquarters Patan is 20 kilometers from Satbanjh.

22:    The terrorists group killed Bhola Saha Teli, active member of the ruling Nepali Congress at Karuniya in Rautahat district.. This is the second murder of an NC worker in two weeks in this district.

In yet another incident, the terrorists simultaneously attacked the offices of five Village Development Committees in Jhapa, destroying millions of rupees worth of public property.

In Bara the eastern part of the Internal Revenue Office in Simara was damaged due to a powerful bomb explosion by the terrorists.

24:    Several groups of terrorists went on a vandalism spree in Kathmandu, hurling petrol bombs at government vehicles and the regional offices of the Nepal Telecommunication Corporation (NTC).

They attempted to destroy a tower within the premises of NTC which however was foiled by security personnel stationed there.

Another group of terrorists sneaked into the premises of NTC Indrayani Exchange at Danchhi village and hurled petrol bombs at a vehicle parked there.

In Koteshwor, another group of terrorists hurled petrol bombs at two government vehicles that were parked near an automobile workshop behind a petrol pump.

Six terrorists were killed in exchange of fire in a jungle of Belbhar of Bardiya.

A group of Terrorists killed a 50-year-old woman, Dhumi Devi Mandal, at her home in Lakahatol village of Rajwara VDC-3 in Ratahat district.

25:    In Kathmandu, a house of senior police officer and the state-owned Gorkhapatra newspaper office complex were among the places that were bombed allegedly by the terrorists.

The terrorists hurled bombs at vehicles at Kalanki in the Kathmandu and in the Bhaktapur district

In another incident, some terrorists, hurled petrol bombs at the compound of the house of the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Basant Raj Kunwar at Samakhushi A nearby parked car was partially damaged in the blast..

The terrorists set ablaze offices of Dhuseni, Soyak, Banjho and Kolbung VDCs. Almost all the records of these VDCs have been damaged by the fire.

In Makawanpur the terrorists set on fire two vehicles of the Fishery Development Centre in Hetauda Municipality-5, property worth Rs. 1.5 million was damaged by the fire.

26:     In yet another incident in the far-flung hill district of Baitadi, the terrorists torched eight government offices and a motorbike.

The terrorists killed Lekhnath Gautam, a teacher at a local school in Phidim, after abducting him from his house in Memeng VDC of Panchthar district.

27:   In Nawalparasi a group of terrorists set an Area Administrative Office on fire in Kawasoti .

Two security personnel were injured when a group of terrorists in a Nissan Pajero opened fire and hurled socket and petrol bombs at a police beat in Chakupat, Patan.

The terrorists also torched a vehicle of the Department of Education Office in Sanothimi. Similarly, the terrorists also set fire to a Nissan Pajero owned by the Second Tourism Infrastructure Development Project ..

Meanwhile, a branch office of the Nepal Electricity Authority at Gatthaghar, Bhaktapur was slightly damaged after a group of terrorists exploded a crude bomb,

Two women family members of Devendra Thakuri, a Royal Nepal Army staff, were killed when the Terrorists destroyed his house with bombs at Thumki VDC-5 in Kaski district on 26 March.

28:     In Surkhet, a group of terrorists shot dead two persons, including Ganesh Bahadur Shahi, Nepali Congress Convention Committee member and district chairman of Nepal Trade Union Congress. The rebels also killed another unidentified person in Chhincu bazaar.

Terrorists have bombed and set ablaze nine government offices in the district of Sindhupalchowk causing damage to property worth millions of rupees. The rebels attacked the District Irrigation and Drinking Water Office, three rangers posts, two post offices, a Road Division Office and one temporary tax office in the district. In Mahendranagar, a civilian identified as Kisimlal Chaudhary, 25, a resident of Bilaspur VDC-3 in Kanchanpur district, was shot dead.

In Dolakha property worth Rs. 30 million was destroyed when the rebels set three government offices on fire in Charikot, the district headquarters,

The terrorists pelted crude bombs at the house of Dilli Prasad Upreti, Chairman of Kharanitar VDC, and at a grinding mill of Gyankaji Shrestha, a ward member of the VDC.

The terrorists have looted more than 200 quintals of rice and other food grains from Chourjahari depot of Nepal Food Corporation while more than 500 quintals have been set on fire.

30:    A group of almost 25 armed terrorists clothed in police uniforms shot dead Ram Sevak Yadav, 55, who was the chairman of Balabakhar VDC of Dhanusha district. In the same incident, son of the deceased, Tej Narayan Yadav, and his neighbour, Lotan Yadav were seriously injured.

In another barbaric act, the terrorists in Kalinjor VDC of Sarlahi district chopped off both legs of VDC vice-chairman, Pramod Baral..

The terrorists destroyed almost all ward offices (11) of the Tulsipur Municipality, while seven out of 11 ward offices of the Tribhuvan Municipality were burnt totally..

The terrorists destroyed Additional Post Office and clinics of Nepal Family Planning Association in Kavre, Dharna, Narayanpur and Pawan Nagar VDCs.

The terrorists burnt the office of the Small Farmers Development Project in Gogli-4 of Laxmipur VDC. . Also in the district, the terrorists destroyed the Gadawa Baza-based unit office of the Nepal Telecommunications Corporation.

The terrorists in Khopasi of Kavre district destroyed at least three government vehicles.

A group of terrorists in Salle and Serigaon villages of Rukum district destroyed six government offices. The government offices under attack are Nepal Food Corporation, Salle Airport, Agriculture Development Office, District Veterinary Office and Bureau of Statistics.

The terrorists destroyed two forest offices in Kapilvastu district.

The terrorists set fire to the dozer used for road construction work in eastern part of the Gorkha district.

They ransacked the office of the Agriculture Development Bank in Bhibad in Tanahu and fled with cash amounting to Rs.12 thousand. The security forces defused two bombs in Rajbiraj of Saptari district and the other in Kabilas area of Chitwan district.

31 :    The terrorists fired six rockets at an army barrack from Kotbada hill. Property worth few million rupees was destroyed when the terrorists bombed an Agriculture Research Centre at Kavre Gaon VDC, about 35-km east of Charikot, the district headquarters of Dolakha.

In Dang the property worth around Rs. 50 million was damaged after the terrorists attacked the powerhouse of 12 megawatts Jhimruk Hydro Electric Project in Nayagaon VDC of Pyuthan. The power plant was built by Butwal Power Company.

In Parbat, terrorists set a vehicle belonging to the Modikhola Hydro Electric Project on fire and pelted socket bombs at the powerhouse at Tilahar VDC-9. Property approximately Rs. 1.2 million was damaged in the fire.

The terrorists destroyed about a dozen district level government offices in Khalanga, the district headquarters of Pyuthan.

Appendix II:

India - Nepal Joint Press Statement
March 23,  2002

1. His Excellency Mr. Sher Bahadur Deuba, Prime Minister of Nepal, is paying an official goodwill visit to India from March 20-25, 2002 at the invitation of His Excellency Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee, Prime Minister of India. The Prime Minister of Nepal is accompanied by His Excellency Mr. Bijaya Kumar Gachhedar, Minister for Water Resources, His Excellency Mr. Purna Bahadur Khadka, Minister for Industry, Commerce and Supply, Mr. Bhakta Bahadur Balayar, Minister of State for Science and Techonolgy, His Excellency Mr. Arjun Jung Bahadur Singh, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, a group of Parliamentarians, senior officials of His Majesty's Government of Nepal and business leaders. He is also accompanied by his wife, Dr. Arzu Deuba.

2. During his visit, the Prime Minister of Nepal visited Rajghat and paid homage to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi. The Prime Minister of Nepal called on the President and the Vice President of India. He had a meeting with the Prime Minister of India, which was followed by delegation-level talks, led by the two Prime Ministers, on bilateral and other issues of mutual interest. Ministers of Home Affairs, External Affairs, Defence, Commerce and Industry, Human Resource Development and Water Resources of the Government of India called on the Prime Minister of Nepal. The Prime Minister of Nepal also received the Leader of the Opposition, Lok Sabha. He also attended a business meeting organised jointly by the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industries. He will visit Kolkata where he will meet the Governor and Chief Minister of West Bengal.

3. The wide-ranging discussions during the visit were held in an atmosphere of warmth and cordiality. During these discussions, the Prime Ministers of India and Nepal noted that the close, friendly and time-tested relations between the peoples of the two countries, based on geographical proximity and traditional linkages, have been developing dynamically in all spheres. The Prime Ministers reiterated that further development of bilateral relations in a spirit of equality, mutual respect and partnership and on the basis of an enhanced level of mutual trust and cooperation remains a priority for both countries. They noted that a regular dialogue at various levels was required to widen and deepen the on-going bilateral cooperation for the mutual benefit of their peoples. The two countries would focus on a forward-looking and constructive agenda to meet the challenges of the 21st century in keeping with the changing realities of the times.

4. The Prime Ministers noted that in recent years, the ties between India and Nepal had been further strengthened by their shared commitment to multi-party democracy and reiterated their resolve to further consolidate democratic values and principles.

Joint Commission

5. The two Prime Ministers stressed the need to hold the meeting of the India - Nepal Joint Commission headed by the respective Foreign Ministers on a regular basis to oversee the entire gamut of bilateral relations and to provide the directives on measures to further strengthen them. The Commission would also review and rationalise the existing inter-governmental mechanisms.

Terrorism/Management of Border:

6. The Prime Ministers reiterated the determination of the two countries to work closely in fighting the scourge of terrorism which was adversely affecting peace and stability in the region and was also impeding socio-economic development. They reiterated their opposition to the use of violence in the pursuit of political or ideological objectives. The Indian side condemned the widespread attacks by the Maoists in Nepal and reiterated its support for the steps taken by Government of Nepal to maintain peace and security in the country. The Nepalese side deplored the brutal attack on the Indian Parliament on December 13, 2001 and expressed its support for India in its efforts to confront the challenge of terrorism. The Prime Ministers renewed the commitment of the two countries not to allow their respective territories to be used for activities inimical to the interest of the other. In pursuance of their shared objective of combating terrorism and cross-border crimes, the two Governments agreed to intensify their ongoing cooperation and continue to work closely with each other.

7. The two Prime Ministers noted the outcome of the discussions held by the Home Secretaries of the two Governments in New Delhi from February 6-7, 2002 and stressed the need for expeditious implementation of the decisions taken during that meeting, including an early conclusion of the Agreement for Mutual Legal Assistance and updating the Extradition Treaty. The two Prime Ministers agreed on the need to prevent the misuse of the open border by terrorists, criminals and other undesirable elements and directed that cooperation in this regard be enhanced. Discussions on the management of the border would continue in the Joint Working Group on Border Management and between the two Home Secretaries.

Economic Cooperation:

8. The two Prime Ministers emphasised the importance of working to deepen and widen bilateral economic co-operation. The Indian side reiterated its commitment to continue its association with the development efforts of Nepal.

9. The two Prime Ministers reviewed the progress on the implementation of various India-Nepal cooperation projects including those identified by the India-Nepal High Level Task Force.

i. B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences : Noting the successful completion of the project in 1999, the two Prime Ministers directed that the conclusion of the proposed MoU between the Governments of India and Nepal on the Development of BPKIHS as a Center of Excellence be concluded within the next three months.

ii. Bir Hospital Expansion : Noting that a new plot of land had recently been identified by Government of Nepal for this project, the two Prime Ministers directed that the Detailed Project Report should be completed expeditiously so that construction work on the project could commence within this year.

iii. Development of infrastructure at selected border check posts along India-Nepal border : The Prime Ministers noted that the Preparation of the Feasibility Study for the project relating to development of infrastructure at four important border customs and check posts namely Raxaul-Birgunj, Sunauli-Bhairahawa and Jogbani-Biratnagar and Rupehdia - Nepalgunj, would be completed by end-April and directed that the two sides finalise the prioritized projects and work out an implementation schedule at an early date.

iv. Launching of jointly-developed pilot projects in Nepal in the field of rural and community development - The Prime Ministers noted with satisfaction that the Project for electrification of two remote villages - Sarang Danda, District Panchthar in Eastern Nepal and Ankhale, District Gulmi in Western Nepal using Solar Photovoltaic energy had progressed and the supply of material and equipment had started.

v. Tanakpur-Mahendranagar Link Road – Noting that the Detailed Project Report and the cost estimates for the project had been completed, the two Prime Ministers directed that all other formalities be completed in a time bound manner to facilitate early commencement of work.

vi. Setting up an Institute of Technology in Nepal – It was agreed that an Institute of Technology would be established at an appropriate location in far-western Nepal and modalities in regard to the project would be worked out expeditiously to facilitate early commencement of work on the project.

10. The two Prime Ministers agreed that the Government of India would undertake the Feasibility Study of the East-West Railway in Nepal under the framework of bilateral cooperation.

11. The two Prime Ministers directed that necessary formalities be completed to facilitate forward movement on the laying of an Optical Fibre Cable Network along the East -West Highway in Nepal.

Trade, Transit and Investment Links:

12. The two Prime Ministers noted with satisfaction that the India-Nepal Trade Treaty had been renewed for a period of five years till March 5, 2007 with mutually agreed amendments to the Protocol to the Treaty without changing the basic framework of the Treaty. They expressed the hope that the new Treaty would pave the way for increased bilateral trade and encourage the pace and process of industrialisation in Nepal. The Nepalese side requested that various taxes and levies imposed prior to the renewal of the Trade Treaty may be reviewed.

13. The two sides agreed to expeditiously conclude a Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPA) which would provide a framework for the promotion of Indian investment in Nepal.

14. Both sides agreed to resolve, as early as possible, the difficulties faced in Nepalese exports to India of agricultural and primary products because of the quarantine regulations in India. Both sides also agreed to expedite the setting up of testing facilities at Gorakhpur and Raxaul, as agreed earlier, so as to facilitate Nepalese food exports to India. The Nepalese side also requested that similar facilities be established at other major border trading routes between the two countries.

15. The Prime Ministers directed that within the next two months, the two sides should hold negotiations and conclude the bilateral Agreement on the operationalisation of the Birgunj-Raxaul Rail Link and the Inland Container Depot (ICD) at Birgunj.

16. The Prime Ministers also directed that the two sides hold negotiations and conclude the Agreement on the Trans-Border Movement of Motor Vehicles within the next two months.

17. It was reiterated that, as earlier agreed, imports of Indian vehicles into Nepal under Nepal’s new emission norms would be permitted on the basis of self-certification by Indian vehicle manufacturers based on type approvals. The Nepalese side conveyed that the necessary notifications in this regard would be issued at the earliest.

18. The Prime Ministers directed that the Inter-Governmental Committee on Trade, Transit and Unauthorised Trade, headed by the Commerce Secretaries of the two Governments, be convened regularly to review and consolidate trade and economic cooperation.

Water Resources.

19. The two Prime Ministers noted that the vast potential for development of hydro electricity in Nepal and the projected demand for power in India in the coming decades offered rich opportunities for cooperation to bring about rapid and environmentally sustainable economic growth on both sides of the border.

20. The Prime Ministers reiterated that the implementation of the Mahakali Treaty would be given high priority. In this context, the two Prime Ministers directed the two sides to complete the joint Detailed Project Report of Pancheshwar Project as per the revised schedule by June 2002 and jointly work out a Plan of Action towards the early commencement of work on the Project.

21. On the Sapta Kosi - Sun Kosi Project, the Prime Ministers stressed the need to set up the Joint Project Office expeditiously and commence work on the preparation of the Detailed Project Report at the earliest.

22. The two Prime Ministers emphasised the importance of the role of the Joint Task Force on Flood Control and Forecasting in working towards joint preventive measures. It was also agreed that there should be close consultations between the concerned authorities of the two Governments regarding flood control structures and that preparation of a Master Plan on Flood forecasting should be jointly worked out by the two sides.

23. The Nepalese side raised the problems of inundation in Rupandehi and Banke districts. The two Prime Ministers directed the two sides to undertake a joint survey at the level of Chief Engineers to clarify the facts on the ground and work out agreed proposals by the end of April 2002 and undertake necessary measures before this coming monsoon so that there would be no adverse effects on the lives and livelihood of people on either side of the border. With regard to inundation in Banke, the decisions taken earlier by the Joint Committee on Water Resources would also be taken into consideration.

24. The two Prime Ministers directed that the second meeting of the Joint Committee on Water Resources, headed by the Water Resources Secretaries of the two Governments be held immediately. They further directed that the Committee should meet at least once in every six months in future to discuss and resolve all important issues relating to Water Resources and regularly monitor progress.

Cooperation in Science and Technology:

25. The two Prime Ministers noted with satisfaction that the Agreement of Cooperation in the field of Science and Technology would provide the necessary framework for the ongoing and future cooperation in this area and would be of mutual benefit to both countries. They agreed that the opportunities which this Agreement would open up should be fully utilised by both sides for the benefit of the peoples of the two countries.

Cooperation in Human Resource Development:

26. Taking note of traditional links between India and Nepal in the field of human resource development, the two Prime Ministers noted that cooperation in this key sector would be further streamlined and strengthened.

Boundary Demarcation:

27. The two Prime Ministers noted the importance of a scientifically demarcated alignment of the international boundary between India and Nepal. They reviewed the progress in the work of the Joint Technical Level Boundary Committee and directed the Committee to complete its task by 2003. The two Prime Minister reiterated that, in case the Committee was unable to reach mutually acceptable agreement on certain specific segments of the boundary despite its best efforts, detailed reports on these pockets, including a compilation of the available evidence, would be submitted to the two Governments for their consideration. The Prime Ministers also directed the Joint Working Group of the Joint Technical-Level Boundary Committee to expeditiously complete its examination of the facts relating to the alignment of the boundary in the western sector, including the Kalapani area, and in other pockets, where there were differences in perceptions of the two sides.

1950 Treaty:

28. The Prime Ministers noted that in accordance with the earlier decision that the Foreign Secretaries of India and Nepal undertake a review of all issues pertaining to the 1950 Treaty, the two Foreign Secretaries had held their first round of discussions in January 2001 and had agreed to continue their discussions.

Indian Teachers in Nepal:

29. In response to the request made by the Indian side for the regularisation of the services of Indian school and college teachers employed in Nepal, the Nepalese side assured that the decision was under consideration by His Majesty’s Government of Nepal.

Consulate General of India at Birgunj:

30. Responding to the long-standing Indian request for the setting up of the Consulate General of India at Birgunj, the Nepalese side informed that the request would be considered by His Majesty's Government of Nepal.

Invitation:

31. The Prime Minister of Nepal invited the Prime Minister of India to pay an official visit to Nepal at an early date. The invitation was accepted with pleasure. The dates of the visit would be decided through diplomatic channels.

New Delhi
March 23, 2002

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