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NASeA Monthly Talk Session Completes with Success!

Press Release:

Topic:      Current Perspective on Political Crisis in Nepal

Bimal Nepal President, Nepalese Association in Southeast America (NASeA)

December 20, 2015

Today Nepalese Association in Southeast America (NASeA) and Association of Nepalese in Midwest America (ANMA) jointly hosted the monthly talk program on “Current Perspective on Political Crisis in Nepal.” Speakers Mr. Mukesh Singh and Dr. Sagar Rijal gave their respective perspective on the above theme.

Background: After a decade-long Maoist insurgency, Nepal finally became a federal democratic republic. In April and May, this year Nepal was hit by two back-to-back large earthquakes that devastated the country, killing close to 9,000 people and causing almost $10 billion worth of damages to physical structures. Earthquakes also triggered the long-awaited constitution was “fast tracked” and promulgated on Sept. 20, after seven grueling years of negotiations. With almost 90 percent majority of the Constitutional Assembly endorsement it should have been one of the happiest moments in the history of Nepal, but it was not to be. The Madhesh-centric parties (representing a section of people from Nepal’s southern plains) had been protesting for more rights and proportional representation in the new constitution, even before it was promulgated. After the promulgation, they felt their demands were ignored, and took to the street to protests.

Since September, 51 people have died in protests at border points with India. Protester in Raxaul blocked the border while India silently imposed transit blockade at other points citing security concerns for its drivers. This has caused shortage of vitals such as fuel, foods and medicine. The fuel shortage will push more than 800,000 people below the poverty line according to Nepal Central Bank estimates. Similarly, United Nations has expressed deep concern over what it said is a “critical” shortage of lifesaving medicines and fuel, and warns this could put at least three million children at risk of illness in the coming winter months.

In North America, numerous protest rallies were held from Washington DC, New York, Boston, San Francisco, Chicago and Ottawa denouncing the

unannounced economic and transit blockade by India which violates the rights of landlocked countries like Nepal. Such protest rallies have galvanized the NRNs worldwide and have played a catalytic role to unite Nepalis as well as to increase the pressure on the Indian government and Nepali politicians. Letters were submitted to the White House, Indian Embassy and a meeting was held at the State Department to discuss the current situation. Similarly, a protest rally and a cycle rally supporting the rights of Madhesh were conducted by ANTA in DC and NY.

Highlights of the Talk Session:

Speaker 1: Mr. Mukesh Kumar Singh (Columbus, Ohio)

Mr. Singh highlighted the fact that there are 3 main issues currently facing Nepal