SOLUKHUMBU, March 25: Locals of Tingla VDC in Solukhumbu district have taken to the streets protesting against the restructuring of local units. Stating that their VDC was included in Necha Salyan Rural Municipality against their wishes, the locals blocked the roads in the area starting Friday.
The locals have blocked the Tingla road section that connects the district with Kathmandu and the tarai. As a result, several vehicles heading for Kathmandu and tarai region have remained stranded on the road.
The locals, who have been staging sit-in protests in front of the District Administration Office (DAO) and District Coordination Committee (DCC), have not allowed even a single vehicle to pass through Solu. In several places the protestors have obstructed the road with felled trees. People who have urgent work or a medical emergency have no choice but to charter helicopters.
About a thousand protestors had staged a sit-in protest in front of the DAO and DCC and chanted slogans also on Thursday.
According to locals, they wanted their VDC to be included in Solu-Dudhkunda Municipality and not in Necha Salyan Rural Municipality.
Members of a struggle committee formed to protest against the decision said they will continue their protests until the government heeds their demand.
According to the DAO, a team of police returned to the district headquarters after unsuccessfully attempting to foil the locals' strike. "We will continue the protests until our demands are met," said Bal Kumar Karki, coordinator of the committee.
Meanwhile, the DAO said it is working to find an amicable solution to the dispute through talks with the disgruntled locals. "We have invited the protestors for discussions. But they said they will sit for talks only after some homework," said Chief District Officer Umesh Pandey.
The district chapter of the CPN-UML has also supported the protest of the Tingla locals. A recent meeting of UML has decided to support the locals' demand for inclusion of Tingla in Solu-Dudhkanda Municipality, informed Jagannath Bastola, secretary of the party's promotion department.