16th Republic Day: Government celebrates, people cry foul

As the government marked the day with various events, people have taken strong exception to the presidential pardon to the convict of 2015 Tikapur carnage.

NL Today

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Kathmandu:  The government celebrated the 16th republic day by organizing various events. President Ramchandra Paudel attended the special ceremony held at the Nepal Army Pavilion, Tundhikhel. On the occasion, aerial shower of flower petals and display of banner scribing ‘Republic Day, 2080’ was undertaken. Besides, traditional cultural processions were held in Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur. Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ addressed the ceremony. Nepal Army, Nepal Police and Armed Police Force performed march-pasts.  

The special ceremony was attended by Vice-President Ramsahay Prasad Yadav, acting Chief Justice Hari Krishna Karki, Speaker Devraj Ghimire, National Assembly Chairperson Ganesh Prasad Timilsina and Deputy Prime Minster duo, Purna Bahadur Khadka and Narayan Kaji Shrestha among other government officials.

Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister said conspiracies were being hatched to reverse the achievements of federal democratic republic, claiming that no ill efforts to hamper the entire system upon some weaknesses over its implementation would be entertained. “Such attempts will never be allowed to be successful,” he said.

Meanwhile, people on social media have taken strong exception to the decision of the government to give clemency to Resham Chaudhary, the convict of the 2015 Tikapur carnage, on the occasion of republic day.  Rights bodies and some political parties have criticized the government’s move.  Issuing a statement on Monday, Accountability Watch Committee (AWC) described the move as a mockery of republic and lack of faith in the judiciary. Anup Rajouria wrote on Twitter: “Prez Paudel’s pardon erodes trust. Affects security forces morale, questions justice system’s integrity. Unfortunate decision with serious implications.” Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP) has condemned the decision as an injustice to the victims.  Nepali Congress General Secretary Gagan Thapa has also opposed the government’s decision to give presidential pardon to Chaudhary.