Protesting against an accident reportedly caused by a vehicle of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Wednesday, locals at the vicinity of three Beldangi camps have blocked regular IOM vehicles from carrying exiled Bhutanese to Damak and Bhadrapur from the camps, Sunday.
Agitating locals said, one local of Damak-3 Purna Prasad Adhikari, who was reportedly hit by IOM vehicle (91-1-018) on Wednesday, lost his hand during the mishap. Adhikari was working at Beldangi-Damak section of the road and operating thrasher at the time of the accident.
IOM refuted the allegation during an all-party meeting on Thursday held at Damak Police Station, Inspector Nabin Karki informed Bhutan News Service.
“However, it agreed to be abided by the reports of official investigation into the matter,” he said.
According to Inspector Karki, IOM has been bearing the treatment cost of Adhikari, who is being treated at Neuro Hospital, Bansbari, Kathmandu.
Locals and relatives of injured Adhikari have demanded written commitment from the IOM about the compensation package. IOM is learnt to have refused this unless a probe report into the case is furnished.
“They have been barring the IOM vehicles from entering into the camps since Friday demanding such a commitment letter,” added the Inspector. However, other camps have remained unaffected.
Arjun Chhetri of Beldangi-II camp said he saw dozens of local youths obstructing exiled Bhutanese with their flight schedule from moving to Bhadrapur Airport this morning.
“Even no private reservation was allowed for those fellow-refugees. The local youths tried to seize and throw away their bags and other stuffs,” said Chhetri.
The Armed Police Force (APF) intervened into the situation and baton-charged the agitating mob.
A few families managed to reached the IOM office Damak somehow while others have been waiting at the APF camp in Beldangi-II and Beldangi-I.
(With inputs from Tulsi Upreti of Beldangi-I and Hari Kumar Dahal of Beldangi-II)