Nepal to clear protesters from India border

Kathmandu, Nov 23 (IANS) The Nepalese government has decided to clear the Indo-Nepal border points and highway off protesters who have been blocking them for months, it was announced on Monday.

This will be part of a special security plan to tackle the increasing violence in the southern plains of the country, Xinhua news agency quoted home ministry spokesman Laxmi Prasad Dhakal said.

“The government has decided to clear the Indo-Nepal border points and highway that (have) been blocked by the protesters through special security strategies,” he said.

“We will jointly deploy the Nepal Police, Armed Police Force and National Investigation Bureau in the volatile area to (bring) the situation under control.”

The minority Madhesi community has been obstructing the border points with India and blocking the Mahendra highway, which links Kathmandu with the eastern Terai plains.

They are demanding amendments in the delineation of federal provinces in the recently promulgated constitution.

On Sunday, a meeting of the Central Security Committee headed by Home Minister Shakti Basnet decided to take stringent measures to jointly mobilise the security agencies.

The decision comes after the deaths of three protesters during police firing on Sunday in Terai district.

Nepal is reeling under a severe crisis following three months of strikes and protests by Madhesis. Kathmandu has accused New Delhi of imposing an unofficial blockade on the border. India denies the charge.

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