Nepal-Bihar border to be sealed for polls
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Nepal-Bihar border to be sealed for polls

Nepal's border with India will be sealed for three days next week to ensure security during the Feb 8 local election in the kingdom.

india Updated: Feb 02, 2006 13:38 IST

Nepal's border with India's Bihar state will be sealed for three days next week to ensure security during the February 8 local election in the kingdom.

Mahottari, Sarlahi and Rautahat districts in eastern Nepal, which border Bihar's Sitamarhi district, will be affected by the three-day curbs from February 7, Nepal's official media said on Thursday.

Security and administrative officials of the districts held a meeting this week to discuss security for the controversial polls. Nepal's Maoist guerrillas have warned that they will not allow the elections to take place and have begun a series of attacks on security posts since last month.

The Royal Nepalese Army suspects that the rebels bring explosives and sophisticated weapons from across the open border.

Accordingly, border curbs would be imposed to check infiltration by "subversive elements", the state media said.

Despite most political parties boycotting the polls and the international community urging King Gyanendra to begin peace talks with the opposition parties and Maoists, the adamant monarch has refused to defer the exercise.

Just 22 parties are taking part against the over 120 that participated in the last polls.

All of them are fringe parties or splinter factions headed by royalist ministers.

There are no candidates for over 50 percent of the 4,146 posts and candidates who were appointed uncontested have been making public statements saying they have resigned, fearing reprisals by the Maoists

The rebels have killed a candidate, abducted a second and bombed the houses of several more.

They also abducted the chief administrative officer and 25 more government staff, including policemen, from western Nepal on Tuesday night.

Out of Nepal's 75 districts, only 43 are taking part in the election with about 13 per cent of the population is eligible to vote.

First Published: Feb 02, 2006 13:38 IST