Four people are dead and seven injured after a series of three explosions in Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, according to Al Jazeera. The three blasts took place in separate regions of the city: one in a residential area in the middle of the city, another near a hairdresser at the edge of the city, and the final near a brick kiln. Police official Shyam Lal Gyawali told Reuters that the government suspects it was a group of Maoist rebels from the Communist Party of Nepal retaliating in response to the arrest of some of their supporters. A pamphlet from the group was reportedly found at the sight of the residential blast, which Reuters reports was a house being used to make explosive devices.
Uttam Raj Subedi, chief of the Metropolitan Police Range, told the Kathmandu Post, “It appears that both explosives were caused by accidental setting off of improvised explosive devices.” Gyawali also told the Kathmandu Post, “Preliminary investigation shows that one person injured in the blast in Ghattekulo was a cadre of the Chand outfit. We are still investigating.” Superintendent of Police Ashok Singh additionally told the Himalayan Times, “Police have recovered pamphlets of Netra Bikram Chand-led Communist Party of Nepal near the spot of the incident.” The Communist Party of Nepal has not claimed responsibility for the attack, nor has any other group.
The Nepali government erred in the past in their choice to ignore the Communist Party of Nepal and dismiss it as a fringe group, excluding them from their talks with other dissatisfied groups within the country according to the Diplomat. With new power, the party is now conducting violent attacks such as the bombing in Kathmandu and has refused to engage in dialogue with the government. Now it will be much harder to curb the group that has resorted to using public explosions for political means, such as last February when the Diplomat reported that they bombed a telecommunications company to show their strength and punish the company for not paying taxes.
The group led by Chand split from the country’s current ruling power, the Nepal Communist Party, when the NCP chose to pursue peace rather than armed revolt. The Diplomat reports that the group has recently been growing, collecting donations, forming paramilitary forces and increasing its presence in the far-western and mid-western regions of Nepal. According to the Diplomat, many of the weapons they use now are leftover from the Nepal Army during the 2006 insurgency of Maoist rebels.
This second set of deaths at the hands of the Communist Party of Nepal should call the Nepali government to more firmly address the issue of the splinter group utilizing violence to showcase their strength and pursue their political goals. After a period of peace following a peace deal in 2006, according to Al Jazeera, the stability risks falling at the hands of rebels who wish to return to the same revolutionary and violent ideas that previously caused the decade-long conflict in the country.
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