Cases of persecution of indigenous peoples in Nepal under law against cow-slaughter reported in 2012/13

Indigenous peoples in Nepal continue to be persecuted under its law against cow-slaughter—a law deeply rooted and wholly justified by Hindu (and therefore non-secular principles) and one which historically has been used to carry out the State’s forced cultural assimilation of indigenous peoples and to forge a homogenous identity for Nepali citizens.

The act violates namely article 8 of UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) that states that “indigenous peoples and individuals have the right to not to be subjected to forced assimilation or destruction of their culture.” Further, under Article 1 of UNDRIP and Article 3 of International Labour Organisation Convention No. 169 (ILO C. 169), indigenous peoples are due the full measure of human rights and fundamental rights promised to all peoples under international human rights law—including the rights to freedom of religion, equality before the law and minority rights to cultural expression as protected respectively in Articles 18, 26 and 27 of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

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NEPAL: Indigenous peoples submit complaint to the UN on violations of religious and cultural rights in Surkhet

1 October 2013

Indigenous peoples’ organizations have submitted a complaint to the United Nations concerning the violations of religious and cultural rights of indigenous peoples due to denial of installation of Buddha idol in Kakre Bihar, a monastery in Surkhet district of mid-western Nepal.

Representatives of indigenous peoples’ and Buddhist organizations, on Monday, emailed the complaint in an urgent communication to the UN Special Rapporteurs on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, in the field of cultural rights and on freedom of religion or belief. The complaint details obstructions by the Government to install the idol even after fulfilling all necessary procedures, including police intervention on the rally taken out on 25 May 2013 for installing the idol. More than 50 devotees were reportedly injured or looted of their belongings in the brutal police assault. More

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