Chitwan, Oct 29: The government plans to distribute the second and final tranche of the cash package to ex-combatants who chose voluntary retirement, from Wednesday.
The Special Committee Secretariat teams have reached the respective districts to pay the installments to ex-combatants who decided to choose voluntary retirement last January and March. The secretariat teams have made preparations to pay the amounts from the district administration offices (DAOs).
The first installments were paid at the cantonment sites, which were evacuated after completion of the integration process.
Ex-combatants have expressed their happiness over the final installment despite the delay in distribution.
Ex-combatant Ramchandra Mainali said, “The amount has added some hope to my uncertain career and unemployed situation.” Following distribution of the final installments to the former People´s Liberation Army (PLA) personnel, the peace process is supposed to come to an end, with the combatants no longer a government responsibility and the tenure of the secretariat ending within this month.
According to Madhubilash Pandit, acting secretary at the secretariat, about 13,922 Maoist ex-combatants who chose voluntary retirement during last year´s regrouping had demanded payment of the amounts before Dashain. But because of budget constraints the government could not oblige them.
Ex-combatants at the first division cantonment will receive their checks from stalls at DAO Jhapa where Sambhuram Shimkhada from the secretariat and Hari Bahadur Basnet from among the ex-combatants will be on hand for the check distribution.
The ex-combatants of the second division cantonment will receive the checks from stalls at DAO Sindhuli where Ramananda Mishra and Dhanbahadur Maski are deployed.
A team lead by Balananda Sharma, coordinator of the special committee secretariat, has reached Chitwan to distribute the checks to ex-combatants of the third division. The team includes Chandradev Khanal Baladev, deputy commander of the ex-combatants.
Ex-combatants of the fourth and fifth division cantonment will receive the checks at Nawalparasi and Dang DAOs respectively. Deepak Prakash Bhatta and Jeet Bahadur Pun have reached Surkhet for the same purpose at the sixth division cantonment and Gopal Bahadur Bohora reached Kailali for the seventh division.
Each team includes an accountant, two computer operators and two officials from the respective DAO.
Ex-combatants can collect the remaining 50 percent of the cash package worth Rs 500,000 to Rs 800,000 from stalls set up at the DAOs from October 31 to November 10.
The Ministry of Finance has released more than Rs 3.5 billion for the second and final installment. Till September about 1,630 ex-combatants had received their full payment and then left the cantonments
Out of 3,123 combatants who chose integration into the Nepal Army, 1,460 have been selected, including 71 eligible for officer ranks and the rest for rank and file.