Senior Madhesi leader Rajendra Mahato and several people were injured in a clash with Nepal Police during a protest near Biratnagar on the Indo-Nepal border on Saturday.
News reports and photos showed the chairman of Sadbhawan Party, one of the four constituents of the United Democratic Madhesi Front, had sustained injuries to his head and legs. He was rushed to a nearby hospital.
Madhesis who reside in the Terai plains bordering India have been protesting against Nepal’s new constitution for more than four months, seeking fresh demarcation of federal boundaries and other rights.
On Saturday, Mahato and other Madhesi protesters entered Nepal from India and tried to stage a sit-in on no man’s land. There was a clash when police asked them to shift their demonstration elsewhere.
Madhesi protesters have been blocking the Birganj border point, through which most trade between India and Nepal takes place, for three months. It has resulted in a crisis of essential items and fuel in the Himalayan country.
Nepal’s government tabled a constitution amendment bill in parliament this month to address the demands of Madhesis, but UDMF rejected it as vague and intensified its protests.