Silent candle light vigil for slain hill leader

The candle procession turned out to be the maiden voice of silent protest in the Queen of Hills. At first, there were just a few, who began their walk from the famous Mall. Their walk along Clubside Road was slow but steady, and with a lot of trepidation. But very soon, they were joined by curious onlookers and by early sunset, the crowd swelled into thousands. Surprisingly, youth outnumbered elders.

Some carried placards read: “How can a man be slaughtered so brutally for speaking his mind? We have to regroup and re-establish the voice of democracy.” These were, however, very few in number, probably considering the tension in the area after the high profile murder. Security in the hill was also tightened in view of Governor M K Narayanan’s visit here on Saturday.  

A young student finally summoned courage to light up the first candle, and then others followed. The crowd, cutting across any political lines and   chanting “slokas” and hymns in Nepali, snaked through various roads of the town that had been the epicentre of Tamang's political activities for over four decades, before culminating at the spot near the famous Planters’ Club, where the 64-year-old leader was hacked to death before a posse of police.
There was a stunning silence all around as mourners walked up to the spot one by one to pay homages to the dead leader. The rally, participated by people from across social strata, reminded of the candle light vigil in memory of slain Rizwanur Rahman in Kolkata a couple of years ago.

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