Student Abuse

Students in uniform used in the name of political protest in Nepal, Again

However, this is not the first time students have been abused by political leaders in rallies as foot soldiers to push their agendas.

Students in their uniform were forced to attend a political rally organized against PM Oli's decision to dissolve parliament. Photo: BL Media ~ English Desk

Students have again been abused in Nepal in the name of protesting Prime Minister KP Oli's decision to dissolve parliament.

CPN (Prachanda) leader Barshaman Pun, who had taken to the streets demanding the restoration of the parliament, had organized a protest rally in Rolpa on Friday.

The civil war that resulted in the deaths of over 17,000 people, over 25 years ago was started in the district of Rolpa in Nepal. On Friday, students in their school uniforms were seen in a political protest rally in the same district, which has raised the brows of some people.

This issue has been recognized globally as it has become a growing concern that children were used by politicians in a political protest rally that could have gone violent at any moment.

However, this is not the first time students have been abused by political leaders in rallies as foot soldiers to push their agendas.

Politicians have been known to use children and people having amenable to no political opinions in their rallies to intimidate the opposition with mass.

Chairman of the village that this protest took place in, Nanda Bahadur Pun, and ward chairman, Lalit Gharti had reached the school a day before the protest rally and issued an order to the students to participate in the protest rally in their school uniform.

Around 300 students studying at the local “Krishna High School” were forcibly included in the protest rally organized by leader Pun.

The school was closed and the students in uniform were forced to parade around the market. Some students were seen sitting and some were standing during the three-hour-long protest rally.

The BL correspondent had asked the Principal Kaviraj Rijal of Krishna High School as to why the students were used in political meetings when the school was declared a peace zone. Replying to this, Rijal said, "We are under the local government. We just followed their instructions.”

Students of 8th, 9th, and 10th classes studying at Krishna High School were present at the rally. "We have been instructed by Chairman Nanda Bahadur Pun and ward chairman Lalit Gharti to come in uniform," said Rijal.

BL correspondent had a discussion with the School Management Committee Chairman, Vijay Gharti about this. In which he said, “I have also heard that teachers and students attended the rally in uniform. This is completely wrong. We had signed the agreement declaring the school a peace zone. It is illegal to make students attend a political rally in uniform just because the local government gives instructions.”

Similarly, Chief District Officer Narendra Rana has also objected to the use of underage students in their school uniforms in a political protest rally. He said that he would understand the facts and recommend action to the upper body.

"We are collecting all the information," said Chief District Officer Rana.

President of the Nepal Congress Rolpa and former minister Amar Singh Pun has also opposed it. He said, "It is unfortunate that a leader with a stature like Varshaman Pun has allowed students to attend his program."

"Our party has taken this issue ruminatively. Just because the Prime Minister has violated the constitution, doesn’t mean that we can do it too. We have already declared schools as peace zones in the constitution,” Amar Singh told BL correspondent.

BL Media also talked to the ward chairperson, Lalit Gharti, about this. In which he said, "We had requested some teachers to participate in today's program. But, we didn’t mandate their participation nor did we put them under pressure to attend the rally. The students must have been in their respective organizations. They must have come spontaneously on Friday.”

Former Speaker of the house Onsari Gharti, Central Member, and In-charge of Rolpa district, Dipendra Pun were present on the occasion.

Publish : 2021-01-24 15:23:00

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