HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
GORKHA: All Nepal National Independent Students Union (Revolutionary), who owe their allegiance to the Mohan Baidhya faction, allegedly torched the district headquarter-based Saraswati Higher Secondary School Aahale today, sources said.
According to Meghnath Lamichhane, acting headmaster, Shankar Nepali and Bijaya Thapa Magar, who are affiliated to the ANNISU(R) set the school building on fire after sprinkling petrol when other students were about to start the school prayer at around 9.45 am.
Student backed by teachers and guardians extinguished the fire. According to Narayan Khatri, chairman, school management committee, property worth Rs 1.5 lakh was destroyed in the arson.
Police arrested Baburam Nepali, Ajaya Nepali of Gorkha Municipality and Hariram Pariya of Gakhu in connection with the incident. However police have not been able to arrest Shankar Nepali and Bijaya Thapa who were also allegedly involved in the incident.
Meanwhile Kumar Tiwari, ANNISU(R) district chairman, denied any involvement of his cadres in the incident. “We do not have any such wicked policies or programmes. Those involved in the incident are not members of our organization,” he added.
ANNISU(R) district leader aligned to Amrit Wagle also denied any involvement of the members of the organisations. However, he defended the incident saying that the school has been charging fees from students illegally.
Meanwhile, issuing a press release, acting headmaster Lamichhane condemned the incident and demanded to book the culprits involved in the incident at the earliest.
Over 320 will remain close
MORANG: About 320 private schools of Morang district have been closed for 14 days in protest of the continuous strikes being staged by different groups. PABSON Morang chairperson Khamba Singh Basnet said that they have closed the schools as it was impossible to run the classes in such unfavourable condition. PABSON’s central vice-chairperson Tikaram Puri said, “Some untoward incidents might happen to students and the schools as well during the bands. So we have been compelled to shut the schools.” Over 1,50,000 students study in private schools in the district. Vice-chairperson Puri said, “We have been frequently asking the strike enforcers not to shut down schools during strikes, but our appeals fall on deaf ears,” adding, “So finally, we have decided to close the schools for 14 days.”