Kathmandu: The son of Maoist chief Prachanda was on Sunday forced to return a whopping USD 250,000 grant from his father's government to scale Mt Everest after the opposition launched a protest demanding scrapping its "immoral" decision.

Youths and student activists belonging to main opposition party Nepali Congress and CPN-UML burnt the effigy of Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai on Sunday staged massive protests to press the government to withdraw the cash offer to Prakash Dahal to scale Mt Everest, the world's highest peak.

Forced by the public outrage against the Maoist-led gorvernment's decision,    Prakash, 30, who is a part of 11-men expedition team, told a press confrence here, "The Lumbini-Everest Peace Mission 2012 has decided not to accept the aid provided by the government."

"We want to return the money to the government, showing respect for the sentiments of the Nepali people."

He said he wanted the money instead to be given to the families of the 16,000 killed in the country's decade-long civil war which ended in 2006.

Prakash has claimed that he has take up the challenge "for the sake of the country, the people and peace and the Constitution".

He, however, said that the mission would not stop despite its decision to reject the government fund.

The meeting of Council of Ministers on Friday allotted the sum to the team that is leaving for the expedition of the 8,848 meter Mount Everest on March 29.

The Opposition leaders have accused that the government has encouraged corruption by granting the tax payers money to the son of the Maoist leader.

"This was an immoral decision taken by the government, which only encourages corruption in the name of scaling the Everest," said Prachanda Manandhar, secretary of Nepali Congress Kathmandu District Committee.