Withdraw Maoists` convictions: Nepal PM to India

The 11 senior Maoist leaders found guilty of anti-India activities by the Patna High Court.

Kathmandu: Nepal`s new Prime Minister
Baburam Bhattarai on Tuesday asked New Delhi to take "necessary
steps" to withdraw the reported convictions of 11 senior
Maoist leaders found guilty of anti-India activities by the
Patna High Court.

During a meeting with Indian Ambassador Jayanta Prasad,
Bhattarai asked India to "take necessary steps" to reverse the

"The Prime Minister today called Ambassador Prasad to his
office at Singhdurbar and drew his attention to the Indian
High Court’s verdict regarding the Maoist leaders," the Prime
Minister`s Press Advisor Ram Rijhan Yadav said.

"The Prime Minister has asked the Indian envoy to take
necessary steps to scrap the High Court`s verdict against the
senior Maoist leaders," Yadav said.

He said the "the ambassador has assured the Prime
Minister to cooperate with him and take whatever steps
required as per the law in this matter".

Eleven Maoist leaders, including two politburo members,
six lawmakers, were arrested in Patna on May 2, 2004 for
alleged involvement in anti-India activities, including
colluding with the Indian Maoists, and jailed in Beur Jail for
over two years. They were later released on bail in 2006.

Subsequently, they were tried in absentia and the court
reportedly slapped fine and jail terms between three and six
years earlier this month for being involved in anti-India

However, the sentencing by the court could not be

Maoist spokesman Dinanath Sharma said they were arrested
in Patna while returning from a top party meeting.

Agitated Maoists leaders yesterday raised the issue in
parliament, saying the case has become irrelevant in the new
political context where they have joined mainstream politics
after the end of insurgency in 2006.


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