Pro-identity groups obstruct highway

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By Our Correspondent,Pashupatinagar, Nov. 29: A bandh called by pro-identity groups demanding the renaming of Koshi Province affected vehicular movements along the Mechi Highway on Tuesday.

The bandh was organised in protest against the arrests of the members of the groups from Taplejung on Sunday. 

Police had arrested two individuals – Bipin Kalingawa and Ananda Kalingawa – for vandalising a vehicle boarded by Yogesh Bhattarai, a CPN-UML leader and an elected federal lawmaker from Taplejung. 

The struggle committee formed to rename Province 1 had declared a bandh along the highway demanding the unconditional release of two of its cadres.

No vehicles were allowed to commute along the Mechi Highway affecting people of Jhapa, Ilam, Panchthar and Taplejung districts.

“The highway will be obstructed until two of our cadres are released,” said Ram Lingdam, a leader of the struggle committee.

Meanwhile, Ilam District Police Office chief Superintendent of Police (SP) Basudev Khatiwada said that the police were escorting public vehicles.

With police escorting, the traffic resumed along the Ilam-Jhapa route from Tuesday evening. 

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