For past two days, most of the times, I was confined inside my Ghattekulo abode. Ghattekulo, in this April Uprising, has shown unprecedented revolutionary spirit. On the 5 th day of general strike, I could no more stay in the cocoon; so headed for office early at 6:30 before the curfew could start. Here’s my Saturday and Sunday Diary.
At around 10am, I roamed around the vicinity. Deadly silence was ruling the streets. I peeked through Anamnagar Chowk, saw two policemen guarding the tower. Then, I retraced back to Ghattekulo chowk where few armymen were guarding.
You rely on FM news, your mobile is dead, and you have nowhere to go. Life seemed like an open jail. But, where there is a will, there is a way. I went to my ex-editor Sudheer’s residence and discussed many topics including the ongoing agitation. Both of us concluded that the movement is catching up the pace but the parties have a long way to go. After the delicious lunch of paratha and rajma, we separated. When I came back, my brother told me few policemen came to the galli and shooed the people away. In the evening, I heard the chanting of slogans nearby. I came out from my cocoon. They were the youngsters from the area. These people were in their infancy during 1990s movement that didn’t yield anything to them. They burnt tires, chanted slogans and a while later, were dispersed.
The day ended listening to the BBC.
In the morning, Ghattekulo was already agitated and tense. In the chowk, protesters were pelting stones, burning tires. But, the crowd consisted of teenagers. One of them said: “Now let’s take a break for lunch.”
I came back to my residence. All the shops were closed. People, however, were watching the demos from their balcony.
In the afternoon, I along with my friend Binod, who had curfew pass, made rounds of Anamnagar, Thapagaun, and Baneshor chowk. At Anamnagar, some stranded passengers were looking for help. A man coming from Gulf State was looking for some photo studio. We guided him. In Thapagaun, protesters were throwing stones, burning tires. We, the journos, were also nearly hit by ruthless policemen. At Baneshor chowk, we met angry policemen. I wanted to go to office, but my friend opposed. Then, we walked along the empty road of Baneshor. From Babarmahal, we went straight to Maitidevi. At Maitidevi, the clashes were in full swing. In the chowk, bricks were scattered all over the road, the police beat was demolished. Security men cast their anger towards us; we swiftly trod our way.
In the evening, the news of half an hour black out and torch rally was circulated. The local folks chanted slogans for a while. A while ago, police entered our area and fired rubber bullets, but no one was injured. At Ghattekulo, Mr. Jiwan Bhattarai, a shopkeeper was injured in the morning. Few protesters were arrested. An army man (who denied shelter to the protesters)’s house was damaged.
Today evening at 8 p.m., I saw the biggest torch rally in long time. So many people were gathered at Ghattekulo chowk. Black out was observed successfully. In the dead night, the crescent moon gave ample light to the impromptu protest program. Protesters with torch in their hands rallied towards Dillibazar. One could hardly identify other, but they all were gathered for a cause i.e. restoration of democracy.