‘We have demanded refugee status, not Nepali citizenship’


Durga Devi Bista, who has been leading 15-member team on the ongoing fast-unto-death since Tuesday, told government representatives and rights activists Thursday that her group has demanded “refugee status, not the Nepali citizenship.”

Exiled women in the protest. Most of those in the fast-unto-death have fallen ill

Bista and her team denied ending the hunger strike until the demands like registration of asylum seekers, issuance of photo identity cards and distribution of rations among others even after repeated requests from the local authority.

Representatives from District Administration of Jhapa, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and rights activist pleaded to end the strike citing the Chief District Office is in a visit to China.

However, Bista demanded presence and written assurance to fulfill their demands from higher authority than the CDO.

Stakeholders and community representatives in the discussion to end ongoing hunger strike

Meanwhile, the Camp Management Committee (CMC) of Beldangi camp issued a press statement Friday urging the concerned authority to find a proper way to bring the ongoing hunger strike to an end.

“Heath conditions of hunger strikers have deteriorated a lot as they have already completed their fasting of 72 hours, and we are worried about their health,” said Camp Secretary Dhan Bir Subba in the statement.

Altogether, 12 representatives from the CMC have signed the joint statement that expressed solidarity to the demands of asylum seekers and other Bhutanese, who have been deprived of aid facilities.

The statement further said that the CMC should not be held responsible if unforeseen situation arises due to delay in addressing the demands forwarded by the protestors.


  1. Why are the so called experts from Bhutanese diaspora around the world silent.How come the comments section is empty? Isn’t this an absolute issue needed to be discussed?Why there is no comment on this particular issue from Australia,US etc..Interesting..