Former Hindu leader plans attacks against churches and public buildings from prison
Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - The Nepalese police have foiled a series of attacks by Hindu extremists of the Nepal Defence Army (NDA) against Christian churches and public buildings. According to the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB), the mastermind is Ram Prasad Mainali former leader of the DNA arrested in 2009 and responsible for several attacks, including one against the Cathedral of the Assumption of Lalitpur (Kathmandu) on 23 May 2009. On January 14, 2010 Mainali sent a letter to Christians and Muslims in which he had apologized for the violence.
The police never believed in Mainali’s repentance. In recent months, agents had put the former leader and several of his accomplices in and out of prison under close surveillance. On March 4 agents arrested six people who came to Kathmandu from other districts of Nepal to detonate bombs in Christian religious buildings. Interrogations revealed that they were old followers of Mainali trained to build bombs. Their goal was to cause as many victims as possible and spread panic among the people, and then extort money from businessmen and politicians under threat of false extremist attacks against sensitive targets such as churches, mosques and public buildings. According to the police Mainali has personally followed the operation through a mobile phone, with which he threatened the victims.
The NDA is a little-known, but over the years has claimed a series of terrorist acts including murder, explosions and intimidation. Its goal is to create a Hindu state in Nepal.In addition to the bomb attack on the Catholic cathedral of Kathmandu, the group claimed responsibility for the attack on the headquarters of the Congress Central Party on 11 August and the Birantnagar mosque of 26 April. The group is also accused of the death of Fr John Prakash, rector of the Salesian school of Sirsya (Morang), killed by unknown assailants in July 2007.