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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 April 2006, 15:09 GMT 16:09 UK
Eyewitness: 'I was shot'
Milan Lamsal
Violent clashes between police and anti-monarchy protesters are continuing across Nepal as thousands of people defy a curfew imposed by the royal government.

The BBC News website spoke to one man, Milan Lamsal, in the resort town of Pokhara who was shot and wounded by security forces at the weekend.


After seeing a big crowd of demonstrators in the main street on 8 April, I could not stay indoors.

Within a matter of seconds, the wound had become excruciatingly painful

I have been a supporter of the pro-democracy movement and the slogans protesters chanted outside were something I could not ignore.

Despite my wife's reservations, I went out and joined the protest rally that was heading towards Mahendra Pul to the north of Pokhara.

There were thousands of protesters and all looked quite energetic and determined for democracy. That injected the spirit of a true democratic demonstrator in me.

But even when every one was marching ahead with that sense of confidence, I think many had this sneaking feeling that sooner or later we would confront security personnel.

On the contrary, we saw a group of security personnel being chased by another group of demonstrators. Soon, many demonstrators in our group started pelting stones at the fleeing security personnel.

'Piece of bullet'

Suddenly, I saw someone falling down (later on I found it was Bhimsen Dahal who had died on the way to hospital).

Protests in Pokhara
Crowds have been fired on a number of times in Pokhara

I was not sure what was going on. Then, someone said the police had opened fire. I thought I should run.

Just when I had begun to do so, I felt something like a needle-prick in the tricep of my right arm.

There was something that had pierced through my shirt and the t-shirt I was wearing.

Within a matter of seconds, the wound had become excruciatingly painful. I did not realise that I had fallen down. I started crying for help.

Fortunately two fellow protesters carried me to a nearby hospital. The doctors took out a piece of lead from my arm and said that it was a piece of bullet.

I am surprised that the bullet could pierce though my arm but not make any hole in my shirt and t-shirt.

'Sad'

I am under medication now and I feel much better except for an occasional pain. The incident has made me more fearless, that is why I have been participating in protest rallies almost every day, even if that means defying curfew orders.

I think the country is demanding change - the monarchy will have to make compromises

I feel sad to remember now that the person whom I had seen falling before another bullet hit me was Bhimsen Dahal.

We knew each other although we were not so close. He was hardly 15 metres away from me when the bullet hit him and he fell down. I could not hear him because everyone was shouting and fleeing the scene.

Opening fire on the demonstrators was totally unnecessary.

True, some protesters had thrown stones at security personnel. But they could have tackled the situation in different ways, for example with baton charges or by firing blanks.

The more such brutal actions take place, the more protesters become determined.

I believe this movement should end up with a proper conclusion. I think the country is demanding change - the monarchy will have to make compromises.





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