History of CVICT
Founder of Centre for Victims of Torture, Nepal (CVICT) Dr. Bhogendra Sharma, a medical professional, had actively participated in the pro-democracy movement of 1990. Dr. Sharma collected some funds from medical professionals and others and started supporting the victims of police atrocities. Even after the success of people’s movement, people continued to approach him for support but he did not have sustainable source of income for supporting the victims.
Even the elected government failed to pay proper attention to the torture victims once they reached at the helm of power. Although they had fought for democracy, they were not a priority for politicians and professionals. Since Dr. Sharma assisted these victims in the past, they continued to come to him with various symptoms and issues. Dr. Sharma attempted to assist these individuals but he found that they were continuously transferred from one department to another without actually receiving adequate assistance. Dr. Sharma realized that victims of torture and conflict are different from traditional medical cases because they require comprehensive intervention and Dr. Sharma thought of starting some institutional attempt to resolve the problems faced by torture victims. Some doctors and other health professionals decided to create a centre to learn about torture cases and better understand how to assist the victims and formed the CVICT on 15th December 1990.
The founders of the organization were Dr Bhogendra Sharma, Dr Prakash Neupane, Dr Gyanendra Sharma, Mrs. Shanta Ale, Dr Balkrishna Bhattari, Mr Sharad Chandra Neupane, Mr Shailendra Guragain,
After its formation the organization has been providing support to torture victims of not only Nepal but different parts of the world. For example a team of psychosocial counselors of CVICT provided psychosocial counseling to the victims of Tsunami in Sri Lanka. Within short period of its establishment CVICT has been established as a professional organization.
As the organization realized that the lone effort of the organization will not be sustainable, it provided training for doctors and health professionals around the country on human rights issues and torture. The efforts of CVICT proved very successful during the period of armed insurgency and at a time when the Country is passing through transitional period.
The organization served approx.43000 victims including 9,825 women through its Centre based rehabilitation and Mobile health clinics, while thousands of people benefitted from its advocacy and policy related interventions.
Recognizing the contribution made by CVICT, the Nepal Government has nominated President of CVICT Dr. Bhogendra Sharma for UN Committee against Torture and Dr. Sharma got elected for the post as a Nepali representative after 27 years.