National

Release of 3 suspects ‘narrows case’

- CHITRANGA THAPA, BHAWANI BHATTA, MAHENDRANAGAR

Sep 13, 2018-

Absolving suspects Dilip Singh Bista, Roshani Bam and her sister Babita, on Tuesday, of their alleged complicity in the rape and murder of 13-year-old Nirmala Panta narrows the ongoing investigation, Kanchanpur police said on Wednesday.

Investigation Officer and Deputy Superintendent of Police Krishna Raj Ojha said, “The investigation into the case has narrowed now. We have traced a way after the DNA test. We shall soon find out the real culprits involved in the case.” The release of Bista and Bam sisters eases the investigation process, he said.

DSP Ojha said the DNA test of the suspect and the victim’s vaginal swab has eased our investigation.

“It is not very difficult now. We can find the culprits once the DNA sample of some suspects match with the DNA test of the vaginal swab. We are preparing to send samples of some suspects for the DNA tests in Kathmandu,” Ojha said.

The Central Police Forensic Science Laboratory did the DNA tests of the vaginal swab.

The District Police Office (DPO) on Tuesday exonerated and freed Bista after his DNA did not match the victim’s vaginal swab. Police released the Bam sisters, as there was no evidence to file cases against them.

The Kanchanpur police had detained mentally ill Bista, a resident of Bhimdutta Municipality-19 on August 20 claiming he was the main accused in the crime. A wave of violent protests followed his arrest as the victim’s family and residents believed Bista was innocent and police had attempted to frame him to protect the real culprits involved in the heinous crime. Police had detained the Bam sisters for investigation on August 23.

The provincial police office said the investigation officers have already initiated the probe from a new angle.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Suraj KC said, “We will take strong action against those security officers who started investigation in the initial phase, if found guilty. We will soon bring the accused officers who were transferred from Kanchanpur for investigation.”

He said the DNA tests of some local suspects would be done soon.  

The local residents are keenly following the progress of the case. “Police had claimed that Bista was the main accused. They should find and immediately make public the real culprits involved in the crime,” said Mina Bhandari, coordinator of the struggle committee formed by residents. She warned the people would not believe in the integrity of police force if they failed to find the culprits.

Nirmala’s father Yangya Raj and mother Durga Devi reached Kathmandu on Wednesday along with some rights activists. They are scheduled to meet with the President, Prime Minister, Home Minister and other officials and urge them to provide justice.

Women in protest rally

Women’s rights activists and the local women staged a protest rally in Mahendranagar on Wednesday demanding justice for Nirmala.

The protesters, wearing black clothes, demonstrated against the rape and murder of the teenager instead of celebrating Teej, a festival of Hindu women.

Many men also joined the demonstrations. The protesters took out ‘silent rally’ from Madan Chowk and moved around the town. “We generally observe Teej wearing red saree, but how can we celebrate the festival in such sad situation,” said Manju Giri who sustained injuries during the protest earlier.  

Another girl raped

KANCHANPUR: A man raped a 10-year-old girl in Mahakali Muncipality-4, Kanchanpur, on Tuesday. Police arrested the 40-year-old man who allegedly raped the girl from Surkhet Tol. The man dragged the girl to a paddy field and committed the crime. According to Area Police Office in Dodhara, they handed the victim to her family after medical tests. Police said they would file rape charge against the accused.

Published: 13-09-2018 07:57

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