Monday, August 28, 2006

66 disappeared from Bhairabnath : NHRC

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) said the number of people who have gone missing from the Bhairabnath Battalion of the Nepali Army (NA) has reached 66.

"According to our investigations and findings, 66 individuals including five women have gone missing from the Bhairabnath Battalion between 2002 to early 2005," said an NHRC official.

This was revealed in a written statement submitted to the Supreme Court (SC) by the NHRC in response to its order to furnish an explanation regarding a case filed by Krishna KC, Himal Sharma, Bina Magar and Leknath Neupane concerning the disappearance of 49 individuals from Bhairabnath Battalion.

“Although KC and his colleagues, in their habeas corpus petition, included NHRC as one of the defendants, we gave a detailed account to the SC stating that the commission has identified 66 individuals who have disappeared from the Bhairabnath Battalion,” said the source.

He further said that the commission hoped that its detailed information to the court will help trace the whereabouts of the missing individuals.

Brigadier General BA Kumar Sharma, chief of the NA’s legal unit, said the army is probing the allegations concerning the disappearance from the Bhairabnath battalion.

“I can’t comment on the issue until I get to see the army’s report after a probe,” he said. Sharma said he was not aware of the alleged disappearance cases hitting 66.

The NHRC list of those disappeared from the Bhairabnath Battalion includes names of Gyanendra Tripathi, secretary of All Nepal National Independent Student Union — Revolutionary’s central secretariat and Nischal Nakarmi Maoists’ regional bureau member amongst others.

The OHCHR Nepal in its report had made public a list of 49 missing individuals who were detained at Bhairabnath Battalion.

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