Dr. Baburam Bhattarai,
Prime Minister of Nepal,
Subject: Investigate the torture of Jit Bahadur Subba and bring the perpetrators under justice
Jit Bahadur Subba, 29 years, is a Bhutanese refugee. At the age of 9, when his parents had to flee the ethnic cleansing policy of Bhutan government, along with his parents he came to Nepal and got registered in the UNHCR managed Bhutanese refugee camps in Beldangi II, Jhapa Nepal.
Since 2009, the international community (USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK, the Netherlands, Denmark and Norway) started resettling Bhutanese refugees because repatriation of these refugees back home proved impossible. In this resettlement scheme, the United States of America accepted Subba. On his way to his new home country (the USA), on 27th April 2012 at 14.30 Hrs, Subba was arrested with out warrant by Nepal police from the Office of International Organisation of Migration, Balwatar, Kathmandu, Nepal. Subba was henceforth disappeared and his family did not know his whereabouts.
Following this on 2-5-2012, the Foundation requested Centre for Victims of Torture Nepal (CVICT) to explore the situation. On 3-5-2012, CVICT’s legal advisor had an access to talk briefly Subba.
The details of Subba
Subba is illegally detained for two days at the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) at Maharajgung, Kathmandu. During this interrogation period he was not provided any food and water. Subba is inflicted with severe forms of tortures, including the technique of hooding. CVICT’s lawyer reports Subba saying, police in civil dresses slapped him on his face 10-12 times. Further, Subba was randomly beaten with a baton and kicked. Subba is subjected to falanga-torture, as a consequence, of which, he has difficulty to walk. “I could not tolerate the torture and have accepted all the allegations put on me, reports CVICT” as Subba saying.
The fact finding further reports, “having lived 18 years in the refugee camps, with no hope of repatriation, out of despair and frustrations, I have purchased Nepali Citizenship”, as subba saying.
On 29th April, Subba was transported to Metropolitan police ranges in Hanumandhoka. There, he was handed over the warrant of arrest (after 2 days of illegal detention and torture). Subba has multiple scars in his body. Owing to pain, he cannot sleep.
According to Nepal police, the case of Subba is under investigation on accusation of fraud of possessing Nepali Citizenship, reports CVICT. To defend himself Kathmandu district court has given only 7 days of time. CVICT’s legal expert says, immediate intervention is essential to stop Subba getting subjected to torture.
On 4th May, the Foundation appealed to National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to stop infliction of torture on Subba.
During his stay in the refugee camps, Jit Bahadur Subba was involved in numerous social activities. He is a journalist of Bhutan News Service. Further, Subba is a passionate lover of literature and has written a number of stories regarding suppression of Nepali population in Bhutan and numerous social mobilizing and awareness raising poems.
Your Excellency, constitution of Nepal defines torture as a crime, Nepal observing customary norms of International law and having ratified the Convention Against Torture, Subba should not be (shouldn’t have been) tortured. Punya foundation hereby appeals your office to kindly explore the situation and bring the perpetrator under justice. Hereby, the Foundation attaches the list of those who expressed solidarity against torture and request your office to set investigation in process.
Punya Foundation is an organization of Bhutanese living in Nepal and in the countries of resettlement. It is registered in Australia and works with a mission of Justice seeking through education and empowerment.
Thanking you in advance for your action.
Dr. Lakshmi Prasad Dhakal
Amsterdam, the Netherlands
CC for follow-up:
1. Chairman NHRC, Nepal
2. Amnesty Internal, UK
3. Human Rights Watch
4. World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)
5. Centre for Victims of Torture Nepal
6. IRCT, Denmark
Editor’s note : The letter was submitted to the Prime Minister on May 9, 2012