Kathmandu, Aug. 19: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs, Bamdev Gautam, has clarified that police personnel were compelled to open fire in self-defense after agitators tried to snatch arms and walkie-talkie of police personnel at police office at Bhardaha in Saptari district on August 18.

Rajeev Raut, 24, who was injured in the incident, died while undergoing treatment at Dharan-based BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences.

DPM Gautam said this while informing the today’s meeting of the Legislature-Parliament about the agitations organised at different places across the country including Nawalparasi and Bhardaha and the initiatives taken by the local administrations to control it.

He said that police personnel were compelled to open fire to bring the situation under control after some 700 demonstrators gathered at Bhardaha tried to attack the Armed Police Force despite frequent request by APF not to disturb the law and order.

DPM Gautam said that the police personnel tried to bring the situation under control as far as possible by charging batons and firing tear gas shells, but the demonstrators tried to snatch weapons carried by the police personnel, compelling them to open fire.

The Home Minister further said that five police personnel were injured in the agitators’ attack. A prohibitory order had been issued not to let any untoward incidents take place there, he added.

DPM Gautam said that initiative was taken to set fire to the Kapilvastu-based office of the CPN (UML) and office of the Cottage Industry. RSS