Their stories are different but they all share the pain of loss.
Sahadev, 16, and Sobhit,14, lost their father at a time when they needed his support the most. A postman at Tikhanal in Dolakha district, their father Parsuram Rawat was killed by security forces on 4 April last year when he was returning home after delivering letters to nearby villages. The next day, a senior security officer came home and apologised for their mistake. They thought Rawat was a "terrorist". Despite the acknowledgement of that "mistake", the Royal Nepali Army hasn't given the family any compensation.
Priti, 5, and Sheela, 2, at Laharemane in Thulopatal keep asking when their father is going to come home. Their mother hasn't been able to tell them their father, Buddhiman Pakhrin, is dead. Maoist insurgents killed the 33-year-old on 2 December last year. His fault? He planned to start a boarding school, even deciding to name it after Lord Buddha, without permission from the Maoists. They killed him for his impudence.
Sevak never even met his father, Bhola Khadka. A resident of Charikot, Khadka was killed when hundreds of Maoists raided the Mainapokhari police post where he was stationed two years ago. His wife, Sharmila, who was pregnant with Sevak at that time, became a widow at the age of 26. She now has to raise two daughters, Sadhana and Sijuna, besides her over one-year-old son.
Although all these families mourn the loss of their loved ones, they are faced with more immediate problems. The ones who died were the main breadwinners. With young children and no resources, the future looks bleak. "Who gave them the right to destroy our lives? Will anyone take responsibility for what has been wrested from us?" they ask. No answers seem forthcoming.