Saturday, May 28, 2022

Freedom fighter Koirala’s monument awaiting protection


Gopal Prasad Baral 

Mahottari, 17 January (2022) - In lack of routine maintenance and supervision, the Matihani-7 based monument of the martyr Keshab Koirala has witnessed a decrepit condition. He was the untiring warrior of Nepali democratic movement. 

He was shot dead on the directive of the then autocratic Panchayati regime in 31 Shrawan 2031 when the Nepali Congress was preparing for waging armed struggle in the country. The monument was built on the site where he was assassinated in 2054 BS following the revival of democracy in the country in 2046 BS. The monument is now in sorry state of affairs due to no proper maintenance and monitoring. 

“The martyrdom of the brave people like Keshab Koirala brought democracy in the country in 2046 BS. The country also got democratic constitution on the backing of democratic movement”, shared Balaram Sharma, a local of Jaleswor municipality-5, Parsa who was also devoted to the people’s movement for democracy along with Koirala. “But now we feel we are being ignorant to Keshab. While witnessing the neglected state of the monument, I am questioning the relevance of the task in memory of the veteran freedom fighter Koirala”. 

Former Prime Minster and founder leader of the Nepali Congress, Krishna Prasad Bhattarai had unveiled the Martyr Koirala Monument built on the premises of Shreeram Secondary School at Matihani-7 in 10 Chaitra 2054 BS. 

“We the five (Keshab Koirala, Ganesh Nepali, Shreedhar Thakur, Mahesh Koirala and Balaram Sharma) were designated to capture Matihani police post”, Sharma said while narrating the event. “We opened the first fire near the post. The police also opened retaliatory firing. We did not have adequate weapons. Koirala was shot dead by police in retaliation”, he remembered. 

The Marty Keshab Koirala Memorial Trust had constructed the monument in his memory with the financial assistance of the Nepali Congress-led government in 2048 BS. “We erected the bust of martyr Koirala at the moment but did not get cooperation to carry on maintenance and other works”, said Trust chair and NC leader Upendra Chaudhary. 

Keshab Koirala was born in Ratmate-1, Chhahare of Okhaldhunga in 3 Asar 2007.