Police use force to end road blockade

BIRGUNJ, Aug 2: In line with the government´s newly introduced policies, security agencies here have started taking initiatives to control road obstructions.

Police used force to end a road blockade enforced on Saturday by locals demanding compensation for the injured in a road accident at Murtichowk and Bypass areas of Birgunj. Locals clashed with the police after the intervention. Police resorted to baton-charge and fired a couple of blank firing and teargas shells to contain the group.

“Now there can no longer be road obstruction for whatsoever reason,” District Police Chief Subodh Ghimire said. “What we did here today is only the beginning.”

The government´s new security action plan has impressed transport entrepreneurs and industrialists in this city. “The state will have total support from people for this move,” said Suman Bhattarai, a civil society leader. “People are entitled to use public roads without any hassle.”

“Highways have been easiest platforms for bargaining until the victims´ relatives get their demands met,” said Guru Prasad Gautam, president of the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ), Bara. “There are certain people who deal with ´dead bodies´ on the highways.” He also blamed the government authorities for road obstructions as the authorities overlook the matter till the crowd come to the streets.

Past records of road obstruction show roads are obstructed for even trivial reasons like cut off in water supply and theft of buffaloes. District Traffic Office Bara said the district witnessed road obstructions for 2,274.50 hours in 56 times last year.

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