JSP and state government fail to give Rs 5 million to martyrs family : Om Prakash Sarraf

Leader, JSP-Nepal

Interview

How are you celebrating the 14th year of Madhes Rebellion which is also Sacrifice Day?

We have been celebrating Sacrifice Day every year in the memory of Ramesh Mahato, the first martyr of the Madhes movement. As our government is also in Province 2, the provincial government has been giving public leave on the occasion of Sacrifice Day on January 20. Janata Samajwadi Party Nepal is also celebrating Sacrifice Day by holding various programs in different districts of Madhes.

However, JSP has not issued any official statement this time.

It is understood that the people’s organizations of different districts will carry out various programs in their favor even more than the Central Committee of JSP. Of course, there should have been some programs at the central level of our party as well. Now, against the way Prime Minister Oli has co-opted, JSP has continuously announced various programs of agitation. It has been holding programs against the unconstitutional move.

Now that JSP has become a national party, no program has been called from the central level on the day of sacrifice?

Even after JSP became a national party, the issues raised by the Madhes movement have become a priority. We have been celebrating Sacrifice Day every year and there is no need to keep announcing programs that are ongoing. As we have been celebrating 5th of January as the day of sacrifice, this year too it is being celebrated spontaneously. This time too, JSP is celebrating Sacrifice Day in different places. Sacrifice Day will never be forgotten because all the agitating forces have come together to form JSP. We don’t have to keep announcing that we will hold a program every year because JSP has a regular program as a calendar for the day of sacrifice. As there are agitations all over the country now, it may not be more focused on the day of sacrifice. Because of the martyrdom of the heroic sons in the Madhes movement, today we are carrying out programs of struggle to protect the achievements achieved there. The KP Oli-led government is now working to end the federalism established by the Madhes movement. Martyrs are remembered to make their dreams come true. Accordingly, our programs are ongoing. Now the whole of Nepal is in turmoil.

Last year, when the then RJP and Samajwadi Party had a joint government, the state government had organized the Sacrifice Day program, but what will the state government do this time?

Where the first martyr of the Madhes movement, Ramesh Mahato, was martyred, JSP will hold a program this time as well. Even in Siraha, JSP has big and influential leaders. There is no need to issue a circular from the Central Committee to celebrate the day of Sacrifice. The government of Province 2 has also announced a public holiday. But it would have been better if the state government had organized a program. However, Sacrifice Day is celebrated in various places of Madhes including Lahan in memory of the martyrs of the Madhes movement. In order to protect the achievements of the Madhes movement, Jaspa is now agitating for the implementation of democracy, federalism and proportional inclusion. JSP is making a big movement to make democracy. JSP is working hard to fulfill the dream of heroic martyrs like Ramesh Mahato. JSP does not compromise anywhere in this.

Where is the commitment to give Rs 5 million to the martyrs of Madhes movement?

As per the commitment made by the United Democratic Madhesi Front of the then Madhesi-centric parties, the state government should have provided Rs 5 million to the martyr’s family. For this, we have been raising our voice internally in various forums. We are also urging those who are leading the state government. If we have a government for five years, if we can give one million rupees to the martyrs in one year, we can fulfill the commitment we have made in five years. The value of life cannot be compared to Rs 5 million, but if we had tried to fulfill our commitment, it would have given more support to the ongoing struggle for the rights of Madhes in the future. Somewhere or other, our JSP and state governments have failed in this regard. We also have an ideological difference of opinion that the state government could not do it and the party ranks did not pay attention to it. We are putting pressure on the party to fulfill the commitment made at that time. The state government has partially done something for the families of the martyrs and the injured, but not as much as it should have been.

Who stopped the state government from working as per its commitment?

Even though the party had a state government, it did not follow the party’s instructions and policies. As the ministers fell in the quota of leaders, it went accordingly. Instead of following the party’s policy and agenda, the state government seemed to be working only to please its leaders. Overall, the ministers of the state government did not seem to work institutionally. The then Madhesi Morcha had announced to give Rs 5 million to the martyr’s family. From that, the components have come to the same place and JSP has been built. If the party’s policy had been implemented, such complaints would not have come now. The state government has also failed in this and our leadership has also failed.

How much work has the state government done to make the dream of a martyr come true?

Another major factor in the failure of the state government to realize the dream of the martyrs is the indifference of the federal government. The state government could not function due to the non-cooperation of the federal government which did not want to transfer the rights given by the constitution to the state government and understood the state as its unit. The federal government seemed dishonest towards the states, it adopted various policies to make the states fail. However, the resources under the state government could not be utilized properly. It is said that the federal government did not provide assistance or rights but could not use the resources it had. There are all the infrastructures that can make Province 2 prosperous, there was an opportunity to work in every field including education, health, transportation, employment, agriculture. Province 2 could have been established as an agricultural province. Although the federal government created obstacles in many places, the state government could not do so.

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