Nepalese minister dragged to court over rights violation

Last Updated: Friday, May 27, 2011 - 23:16

Kathmandu: A top Nepalese minister was
on Friday dragged to court over alleged human rights violation,
with the rights groups demanding his dismissal from the
cabinet.

The appointment of Agni Prasad Sapkota as Information
and Communications Minister in Communist-led government has
sparked an outcry amid allegations that he was involved in the
abduction and killing of Arjun Lama of Kavere district during
the decade-long insurgency which ended in 2006.

A writ has been filed against Sapkota, a top Maoist
leader during the civil war, in the Supreme Court by Advocacy
Forum Director Mandira Sharma, former National Human Rights
Commission members Sushil Pyakurel and Kapil Shrestha, human
rights activists Gopal Krishna Shivakoti, Subodh Pyakurel,
Charan Prasai and Sunil Kumar Ranjit.

The writ expressed concern that a person involved in
serious human rights violation could not be appointed to the
cabinet.

Minister Sapkota along with Prime Minister Jhala
Nath Khanal, Home Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara has been
made the defendants in the writ.

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for
Human Rights had also expressed concern over his appointment.
However the minister has dismissed the allegations of
the rights activists.

The Maoists, who ended the insurgency and joined
mainstream politics, emerged as the single largest party in
the 2008 Constituent Assembly election and headed a coalition
under its supremo Prachanda.

The government collapsed amid a row over the dismissal
of the then army chief Rukmangad Katawal.

PTI



First Published: Friday, May 27, 2011 - 23:16

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