Maoists shoot Butawal municipality's Mayor

Published on May 09, 2004 08:16 PM IST

The Mayor of Nepal's Butawal Municipality, Purnaman Pokhrel, was seriously injured when suspected Maoists opened fire at him, said Home Ministry officials.

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HT Image
PTI | ByPress Trust of India, Kathmandu

The Mayor of Nepal's Butawal Municipality, Purnaman Pokhrel, was seriously injured when suspected Maoists opened fire at him, Home Ministry officials have said.

The insurgents fired five rounds at him when he came out of his house at Butawal, about 200 km west of Kathamandu, they said yesterday.

Pokhrel was hit on his head and has been airlifted to Kathmandu for treatment and his condition was critical.

Meanwhile, the Royal Nepal Army said 1,973 Maoists have been killed and 940 surrendered during the operations launched by the security forces since August 27, 2003, when the rebels unilaterally withdrew from cease-fire.

Observing that announcing cease-fire only gave the rebels time to prepare for future attacks, an Army spokesman said they wanted to find a permanent solution to end Maoist violence.

"We want a full stop to the Maoist violence and not an interval to allow the rebels to prepare for next war in the name of cease-fire," he told reporters yesterday.

When asked about the possibility of a fresh dialogue between the Maoists and the government, he said it is the responsibility of the government to use the "tool of dialogue" at an appropriate time.

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