Bhutan News Service

Camp secy elections over; Beldangi-II remains tensed for sometime

The camp management committee elections in all even camps ended on Friday electing just five camp secretaries for management of seven camps as three Beldangi camps elected only one secretary.

Chabi Khrel congratulates Camp Secretary - elect Dhan Bir Subba (right)/Lok Mahara

Chairperson of the election board, Harka Bahadur Rai, who is also the Camp Supervisor of Beldangi-I camp, announced that Dhan Bir Subba of Beldangi-II Extension camp has been elected to lead three Beldangi camps. Subba received 101 votes out of 324 defeating Chabi Kharel who secured 95 votes.

Meanwhile, Mon Maya Mongar of Beldangi-II has been elected as Deputy Camp Secretary of Beldangi-II and Beldangi-II Extension while Yeti Raj Baral will service Beldangi-I in the same post, the election commission informed.

Baral also contested for the secretary post. However, was able to book only 18 votes.

List of camp secretaries

The security on the second day was at high alert to avoid any unwanted situation or clashes among refugees during the election process.

Our Jhapa correspondent reported that Goldhap camp remained tensed early today at 8 a.m. as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) declared KB Gurung as ‘out of criteria’ to contest for the post of camp secretary. Hundreds of his supporters demonstrated against the UNHCR before the actual start of voting for the camp secretary.

Jhapa CDO speaks to agitating refugees of Beldangi-I to convince them in Beldangi-II camp as they warned of boycotting election/Rohit Pokhrel

Similarly, Beldangi-II camp witnessed demonstrations for almost two hours as the UNHCR and Refugee Coordination Unit disqualified TB Gurung at the eleventh hour. Initially, all representatives from Beldangi-I decided to boycott the electoral process demanding Gurung’s candidacy.

The government officials tried to convince the agitating mass. However, nothing was proved fruitful, initially.

Chief District Officer of Jhapa, Sashi Shekhar Shrestha, who reached Beldangi-II camp to witness the election process tried to convince the agitating refugees and warned them to obey the criteria. He even told refugees that they can file the case against UNHCR and Government of Nepal if they regard that such criteria are against the morale of election and told Gurung was disqualified as his resettlement process was underway.

Following negotiations between the general mass, elected representatives, government and UNHCR officials, Gurung was able to convince his supporters allowing the election commission to conduct the voting.

Reported by Jeetan Subba and Tilak Niraula from Jhapa for BNS with inputs from Tulasi Upreti, Lakpa Tamang, Lok Mahara and Rohit Kumar Pokhrel.

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