State of Fear: Nepal Under Curfew

New article on UWB and D Wagle in UCLA’s Asia Media: Between activism and journalism
……..
By Deepak Adhikari

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Eating and sleeping in the office because of curfew. Journalist/blogger Deepak (clad in sweater) having lunch at Kantipur Publication canteen with his colleagues. Journalists spent night in the office fearing that they would be deprived of reporting for the paper because of limited curfew pass provided by the authorities.

As the state imposed 18 hour curfew starting from 2 AM yesterday to 8 PM today, I decided to stay at office, for the authorities have not provided curfew pass to any media. After chatting over phones, sharing the anxieties with my colleagues, I finally hit the sack at midnight. In the morning, when I woke up, the sunbeam had entered the office chamber. I was wondering, recalling that morning shows the day axiom, what this glowing sun has in store for a country in the throes of transformation.

We headed for nearby teashop. Few people around were reading Kantipur Daily. Kantipur is finally published (it is reduced to 8 pages) amidst the hassles, but the paper could not be distributed due to unavailability of curfew pass. One of my friends called me up to inquire about this. I mentioned him the headlines: Jhapa Ma Senadwara Andhadhunda Goli (Indiscriminate Firing in Jhapa By Army), Eighteen Hour Curfew, Parties will Defy etc. He was not satisfied and told me he had a habit of sipping his morning cup of tea with Kantipur. There are many more like him.

An army truck full of armymen is stationed just outside the gate of Kantipur Complex. A friend has just arrived from Patan through the alleys. He says people are walking in the residential areas. But, in the main roads, pedestrians are not seen. Curfew passes are not given to the international media as well.

Another friend of mine told me that yesterday king was about to dissolve his government and appoint Krishna Prasad Bhattarai as another PM. And, that was his way of agreeing to parties’ demands. But, in the evening, it seems he changed his mind and decided to prolong his rule as long as he can. Yesterday, the state used SMS to circulate anti-movement message. It asked people not to participate in SPA’s movement. At this moment, tranquility is reigning supreme. But, this must be the calm before the storm.

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26 thoughts on “State of Fear: Nepal Under Curfew”

  1. Hye guys,
    Believe it or not, there are reports that the king is trying to negotiate with Parties.
    His conditions were:
    1) KP Bhattrai PM
    2) Nullifying 12 point agreement
    3) Declaration of maoist as state terrorist by SPA
    4)All party+ king government

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  2. i dont think that will happen.KRSHNA PRASAD is an old person who has severe DEMENTIA. testo manche lai pradhanmantri banayera kaam nai chaina.i think king should step down and let the parties form an interim government with the maoists (provided they lay down their arms).This interim government should conduct elections under U.N supervision.
    jai nepal

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  3. The King is now in a dilemma. If he back tracks then all his moves will formally be considered failed and unproductive. And, his claim that Maoists as a threat to SA becomes a big joke. He will do anything to make sure that the Maoists remain as “terroists”. KP Bhattarai is too old to become PM. Again, the autocrat is trying to foul play. The parties and the public should be aware of the evil moves of the King. Mr. Chairman was, is and will be a foul player, both in business and state affairs.

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  4. I am not a communist but i really hate what congress does to us everytime.
    There are reports that girija has given green signal to the king for a all party government with KP Bhattrai as PM and has given up its demand for Constitutional Assembly. Various indian media have reported that only UML is demanding Constitutional Assembly(You may hate indian media but its a fact that they know much more than we nepalese do about our leaders and parties).Its said that the CPM politburo member Sitaram Yechury from india is flying to ktm to convince UML to give up Constitutional Assembly(After all we all know india wants king to remain in power, so that the king would play a role in suppressing the maoist;you should know that india infact doesnt want maoist to gain any thing from this movement,otherwise this could encoursge the indian maoist to do the same;helping 12 point agreemant was just their way of threatning the king)
    Seems that the only thing congress wants is to get to power, they really dont care about peoples aspirations.
    Go to hell all the congress leaders!!!
    Read this.

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  5. There was also buzz that CPM politburo member Sitaram Yechury would fly down to convince the CPN(UML) to be part of a consolidated democratic system.

    -Indian Express

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  6. It just disgusts me to hear that a person like K.P. Bhattarai is chosen as possible PM candidate. He is getting so old that his brain has ceased to function. He will just be like Lokendra Bahadur Chand or any other King’s PM who just failed to do anything after Feb.1 last year. It looks like the King is not at all buzzed by two week long protests. The country is completely paralyzed, people from every walks of life are on the street asking for Democracy, all the government machinery have ceased to function and yet he did not find any other solution than to give audience to brainless people like K.P. Bhattarai, Lokendra Chand and Surya Bahadur Thapa? The King’s action so far is headed to make Monarchy a history. I just don’t understand why he is turning deaf ears to the people? He still has sometime left to decide what he wants to be. A Ceremonial Head or a History.

    If I was king, I would do the following:
    1. Pull out the Riot police from the street and station them at sensitive areas, government properties and restrain them from using force.
    2. Give people a chance to organize peaceful demos because that is a true democracy which he (Gyanendra) always talks about.
    3. Call 7 party leaders to put forward their demands.
    4. Kick out Sirish Shumshere, Kamal Thapa because these two fellows are responsible for what’s going on for two long weeks.
    5. Suspend the Chiefs of APS for using force.
    6. Appoint Sher Bahadur Deuba on a condition that he will hold election in six months to return the power to the people’s government and declare himself (Gyanendra) as just ceremonial head.

    If done these steps, monarchy will still prevail otherwise we all know that Paras will never become the King and monarchy will become a History.

    Prajatantra Jindabaad! Janta Jindabaad! Nirankushtantra Murdabaad! Sahi Sena [icd]

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  7. If Girija agrees with K.P. Bhattarai as intermim PM, he will be the first person to deceive the people and we should take Nepali Congress as the King’s puppet. If other persons like Lokendra or Surya Bahadur Thapa is chosen, we must understand that the King is going to take country back 50 years. We must (under any circimstances) continue the strike until complete democracy is restored. Nepali Junta should not rest until “His Majesty’s Government” becomes “Government of Nepal”, until the army is sent back to barrack, till Kamal Thapa and Sirish Sumshere is put behind bar for criminal activities. Only then we can start a new life.

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  8. Just what I feared would happen seems to be happening.

    abiral says:

    April 19th, 2006 at 7:45 am
    I see no revolution. I just smell a big fat rat in Girija. He is gonna rat everyone and kiss the royal ass. Nepali janta herya heryai!! Ani the same old Maoist problem, only intensified four folds this time. Life in Nepal revolves in cycles.
    Nepal ma ganatantra lyaune bhaye raja sang sangai yi bloodsuckers haru sanga pani ladnu parne chha Nepali haru le, ani matra aaunchha true democracy.

    Ke auchitya bho ta janta sadak ma orleko, ke auchitya bho ta 10 jana le afno jyaan diyeko, and what about thousands getting injured. The maoist problems will still be there, people will still be opressed. Everything in vain!

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  9. Going to ring road? In Thamel not a soul is moving. However we can see a black smoke near Banasthali in Ring road. Now and then we can hear shouting of slogans.

    There are 4 stake holders in Nepal: People, KG, SPA, & MBs. We were hoping we will take care off KG and later MBs. But we always forget our neighbour who is always the largest stake holder. Now Indian envoys are here as Massiahs. And talk of another Indian Messiah comming. Very funny we are not allowed to come out of our home. We do not know what is going to be cooked by KG and these Messiahs?

    Truely it is State of Fear.

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  10. This is absolutly BS. The Nepali people must not accept a prime minister appointed by the King! What the hell – that just takes us back to where we started!
    I don’t care who is flying down from India the Nepali people want the restoriation of the constituent assembly… I know things are getting desperate in KTM and I feel terrible saying this when I am not there suffering with the people who have no food etc. But if the King appoints a prime minister and the parties accept this then the Maoist issue is still not resolved and there is will more violence and bloodshed. Plus I don’t see how the people will just accept a prime minister appointed by the King after all this… India is a significant power over us but they cannot competely decide our destiny.

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  11. RSS

    I went through the link you provided..though it was published in indian media, the article was of a Nepali, Youbraj ghimire..so i say it is an opinion of a Nepali journo published in indian media

    Regarding Sitaram yachauri trying to persuade UMl to give up the demand of constituent assembly…It might just a buzz as article itself pointed out..to my knowledge , Sitram yachuri is the one who is repeatedly backing up loktantra in nepal and he along with his party has been putting much pressure to the indian government to give up the two-pillers theory of Nepal..but i admit , in politics anything can happen..

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  12. RSS

    I found a article by Sitaram yachuri there in solidrity nepal network’s site (insn dot org) where he has mentioned that anything less than restoration of parliament process setting for the constituent assmebly election will be rejected by the nepali people.

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  13. Its too much going on.

    At the end political leaders are also looking their own benefit. They are like dogs and cats who cannot stand in front of each other. Its just their greediness that has brought them together.
    Lets go and have a talk with King now and have a peaceful conclusion to this mess.
    We all know what these leaders wants too. RIGHT?

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  14. I normally don’t comment on rumors. But analyzing the past the country is running on rumors, i need to raise my voice in this.

    Down! Down! Leaders, if you compromise with autocratic rule with any unwanted liberal names. People are awake, you will be wiped out if you are undermining the people’s aspirations.

    Silience demonstrations have brought earthquake to present autocratic regime, do not let nepali to use their khukuri (ultimate choice) which will bring volcano in country.

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  15. Better Nepal!
    Politicians may be greedy, but so is the king and all his parasites.I don’t think its a matter of talk or negotiation, talk on what? Please, tell me what he is ready to give away for the people, his people. Peace is impossible i think unless you’re ready to sacrifice the things you cherish most. NO ones ready to give away anything, and it includes us aswell, not just policians and the king with his parasites ofcourse.
    Off course there’s too much going on, finally! and offcourse brother we know what the politicians want, but tell me don’t we know what we want? and what’s important?
    Oralo lageko mirga lai ram ram haina, whatever, you know what i mean.

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  16. Gyanendra’s plan to negotiate with Parties wont lead anywhere.
    Even if KP Bhattrai becomes the PM, Gyanendra will again start playing dirty once the dust settles.
    As for the 12 points agrement, its nullification will be a big loss for the peace-loving, tyrany-hating people of Nepal.
    Gyanendra wants to ban the maoist and brand them as state terrorist because he knows that they are the only one who can kick his ass.
    Why doesn`t Gyanendra understand that he is not wanted by the people of Nepal?
    He stands as the biggest obstacle in the process of transformation of Nepal into an egalitarian nation.
    Why can`t he just sip tea and let the people take their own decisions?
    “King Gyanendra’s government seems impervious to the suffering of the people,” said Irene Khan, secretary general of Amnesty International.
    If Gyanendra can really feel the pain of the common man he would surely have shared his palace with them.
    But no, what does he do…
    he just shoots them and end their pain forever.
    How great is the King…

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  17. Check out what I just read in Google News:-
    (only 37 minutes ago)
    Soldiers and police patrolled Nepal’s capital on Thursday as thousands of protesters from surrounding areas marched toward the city limits, where troops had orders to shoot on sight anyone breaking a curfew.

    Demonstrators were marching toward Katmandu from several directions, and thousands of people protested just outside the curfew area in the suburb of Gangabu, watched by a line of police and soldiers.

    District administration officers said the 2 a.m.-8 p.m. curfew was necessary to prevent opposition parties from holding a huge rally, planned for Thursday, to demand that King Gyanendra loosen his grip on power.Residents in parts of central Katmandu came out onto their roofs, whistling and banging plates. People used mobile phones to call each other and send text messages, trying to draw each other out for demonstrations.

    ”We are ready to sacrifice our lives for the nation because we are about to be killed, but we are not concerned about that. It is for the nation and without the nation there is no life,” said Sangam Poudel, a 22-year-old student…

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  18. Hello Gurung Keta

    Ok King is greedy we know that. But how many kings are here in Nepal just one. His greed can be satisfied.
    And think how many corrupted Ex-Primeministers, ministers (Political Leaders) are here more than hundreds. Their greeds can never be satisfied. They will suck us until our death and they will run away to European and American countries.
    Atleast King has to make his son another King.
    Are you getting wat i am trying to say

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  19. Ya Politicians are greedy, Raja G is [icd], maybe Maobadi believe in democracy, maybe not. But on a different topic, looking at the photo, do you guys in Kantipur eat on Taparis ?

    Like

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