Judicial panel to probe Kapilvastu violence

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Kathmandu, Sep 21: The Nepal government has constituted a high-level judicial committee to probe into the violence in Kapilvastu district, triggered by the murder of an anti-Maoist leader on Sunday.

The decision was taken at an emergency cabinet meeting held at Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala's residence at Baluwatar yesterday, Kantipur reported.

The meeting also announced immediate relief of Rs 10,000 to the next of kin of those killed in violence.

The three-member judicial panel will be headed by Appellate Court Rajbiraj Justice Lokendra Mallik. Joint-Attorney General Puspha Raj Koirala and AIG Niraj Pun were the other two members of the committee.

The newspaper reported Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula as saying the meeting condemned the violence, expressed its condolence to the victims and urged the people to exercise restrain.

Compensation up to Rs 10,000 would be given to the families of the people killed in the violence as an immediate relief and the medical expenses of the injured would be taken care of by the government, he said.

The government would also provide Rs 10,000 to those whose homes were completely destroyed in the violence and Rs 5,000 to those whose houses were partially damaged.

Meanwhile, at least three people were killed in fresh violence in the district, taking the toll to 26.

Six policemen were also injured in the clashes. Thirteen injured were brought to Krishnanagar for treatment.

Indefinite curfew in many parts of the district remains in place since last Sunday.

Rights groups have asked the government to bolster security to contain violence, collect information pertaining to the losses, and provide immediate relief packages to the victims.

Hundreds of houses and vehicles were destroyed when angry mobs rampaged through the hill districts in protests that followed the shooting of former Chairman of anti-Maoist group Mohid Khan at Birpur village on Sunday. The rioting also spread to neighbouring towns and villages.

Khan was the leader of an anti-Maoist vigilante group during Nepal's 10-year civil war between the former rebels and the government. He was killed by unidentified gunman at his home.

Local people have accused the Maoists of carrying out Khan's killing, a charge denied by the former rebels who signed a peace agreement with the government last year after a decade long conflict.

They instead charged Khan with continuing anti-Maoist activities despite the retaliatory committee being disbanded.


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