Incident Reports

Squatters' Settlement Torched by Forest Office


Karnali, Surkhet, Lekbeshi

Surkhet, Sukumbasi bastima aagjani. District Forest Office (DFO) has torched the settlement of the squatters at Rupse in Satakhani VDC-7 on February 25. The staffs deployed from Satakhani Range Post torched the settlement destroying 13 houses and incurring loss of about 2 million. The people of Rupse claimed that some of them were even physically assaulted by the DFO staffs. DFO justified their act saying the step was taken as the Rupse people chose to ignore the 15-day ultimatum to vacate the area. Chief of DFO, Shambhu Prasad Chaurasiya said that no one has the right to encroach the forest land. The DFO staffs on February 13 had told the people to leave the area. The Rupse people have filed a writ petition against the DFO decision at the Supreme Court on February 16. They complained about the DFO move when the case was sub judice at the Apex Court. The settlement was also burned by the DFO on December 2, 2013. Meanwhile, Rupse Struggle Committee has issued a statement on February 25 condemning the move while they were asking for alternative.