Nepal Ex-Rebels’ Chief Prachanda To Be Dragged To Hague International Criminal Court For His War Crimes

By Purushottam Dhakal, LOS ANGELES: It seems that the bad karma of Nepal Ex-rebels’ Chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ in the past will continue to hunt and chase him until he meets the final judgment day at an international criminal court for his war crimes.

Prachanda, the former Maoist supremo and the current chairperson of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (CPN), will be dragged to the International Criminal Court in Hague, the Netherlands, on charges of war crimes, as a former child militia of the Maoists, Lenin Bista, is speeding up preparations to file a lawsuit against him in the second week of April 2019.

According to lawyers working on the case of Nepal’s war crimes, former child militia Bista has more than half a dozen charges against Prachanda to vindicate that the communist party chairman indeed committed the war crimes. In the war against the state fought in the leadership and direction of Prachanda, the use of children as the Maoist militia to make the war successful and the arrest and murder of the innocent civilians are some of the major charges against Prachanda.

Likewise, making the child militia stateless and stranded after integration of the Maoist militia with the national army of Nepal and massive corruption and embezzlement of money, while the Maoist militia were placed in the cantonments as a part of the disarmament process, are two other major charges against Prachanda.

Talking exclusively with www.nepal24hours.com, Lenin Bista told that he is now in Hague, the Netherlands, and is in a continued consultation with his lawyers on how to take ahead the war crimes case against Prachanda.
“Nepal is still in a phase of completing the peace process. However, some new forces attempting to capture the state power through the means of war crimes are emerging in Nepal’s politics again. In this context, it is essential to penalize the war criminals and thereby, make them aware that such acts won’t go without a consequence,” Bista told this scribe.

“The war criminals are now roaming around the world freely without fear, enjoying the benefits of being the ruling party members. This is hurting the sentiments of the war victims and that’s why, this is very urgent to let them know that their bad deeds involving war crimes have to come to an end with a distinct consequence,” Bista said.

Former child militia Bista was forcefully recruited by the Maoists and now he leads an association of former child recruits, who were forcefully dragged to the war by the Maoists giving them guns and forcing them to involve in a war against the state. Bista is now in Europe for three months but his journey to Hague and Europe was not easy.

Earlier, he had tried to fly to Bangkok, Thailand but his flight was disallowed by the Nepal government – an act that came under stiff criticism from all quarters. One month ago, he was also prevented from flying to Qatar. This time around, the government had to reluctantly allow him to fly to Europe amid the growing criticism.

“The notice of Home Ministry is still intact at the Immigration Department that forbids me from international travels. However, I have managed to land in Europe because of the international pressure and concern regarding my case,” Bista said.

Bista further informed that his travel and accommodation costs have been borne by the government of Netherlands and various European human rights institutions based in Europe and Nepal.

Throughout the month of April, Bista will meet the high level officials of European Union, government officials of Belgium, high level human rights activists of Geneva, Switzerland and various parliamentarians, ministers and politicians of Europe.

Bista’s meeting with Germany’s parliamentarians has already been scheduled, while dozens of welcome and felicitation programs have been arranged by the non-resident Nepalis in various parts of Europe.

In the mean time, some of the influential current ministers of Nepal government and former Maoist leaders, who are now members of the Nepal Communist Party, have repeatedly telephoned Bista, warning him for not to file a war crime lawsuit against Prachanda.

According to Bista’s family sources, ministers and former Maoist leaders close to Prachanda have been luring Bista, saying that they would nominate him in the National Assembly, give him a ministerial birth and provide him with immediate monetary incentives – if Bista returns to Nepal without filing a lawsuit.

With this bold move of former child militia of the Maoists, Lenin Bista, the possibility of Prachanda and other Maoist leaders who committed heinous crimes, during what they used to call as the “People’s War” (1996-2006), are likely to come under the net of law, sooner or later.

Bista’s move has exerted tremendous pressure on Prachanda and other former Maoist leaders, as the punishment and consequences of mongering war crimes are looming large with a real probability. This move has also increased the potential that the 17,000 Nepali citizens, who lost their lives in the 10-year-long bloody war, will finally attain justice, though a little late.

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