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Kanchanpur rape and murder case: Investigators still ‘clueless’

  • State govt draws flak over inaction
- CHITRANGA THAPA, BHAWANI BHATTA, KANCHANPUR

Sep 18, 2018-

It has been 54 days since the rape and murder of 13-year-old Nirmala Panta in Bhimdutta Municipality-18, Kanchanpur. Various investigation committees have been formed to probe the gruesome murder. However, the authorities are still clueless about the culprits.   

“We have not recovered any concrete evidence so far. The investigation is still in progress,” said Superintendent of Police (SP) Kuber Kadayat while admitting that investigators were still clueless about the perpetrators.

He claimed that the investigators were using every available information related to the case to gain some perspective.

“Even newspaper reports and rumours surrounding the case are being verfied,” SP Kadayat said.

After the police team that handled the investigation right after the discovery of Nirmala’s body destroyed the evidence, the government has formed several panels to probe into the case as well as police negligence.

A new nine-member committee under DIG Dhiru Basnyat was formed on Sunday to investigate into the suspected role of police officers involved in the  probe of rape and murder of Nirmala.

About 15 security personnel, including suspended SP Dilli Raj Bista, have been sent to the Capital for inquiry.

“Even the bodyguard and driver of SP Bista have been recalled by the headquarters for investigation,” SP Kadayat confirmed.

Kanchanpur residents have been demanding that the authorities arrest the culprits at the earliest. They have also urged the authorities to investigate into the possible role of Nepal Army (NA) soldiers in the case, arguing that Nirmala’s body was found close to an NA barracks.

“Just adding probe committees and teams is not enough. We demand that the case be investigated seriously,” said Bhabaraj Regmi of Civil Society Kanchanpur.

Nirmala’s father Yangya Raj and mother Durga Devi along with some Kanchanpur-based rights activists are currently in Kathmandu demanding justice for their daughter.

State govt draws flak over inaction

DHANGADHI: Lawmakers of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) have criticised the provincial government for being apathetic towards the rape and murder of 13-year-old Nirmala Panta Nimbukheda in Bhimdatta Municipality-18.

“The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law has done little to check criminal activities,” said provincial lawmaker Ratan Bahadur Thapa, demanding that it guarantee safety of the people.

“Now, Nirmala’s parents are demanding justice in Kathmandu and the provincial government has remained a mute spectator all this while,” said lawmaker Thapa, questioning the existence of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law in the province.

There is no point of having the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law if it could not handle police administration in the province, Thapa added.

Another lawmaker Govinda Raj Bohara of Nepali Congress said that people dreaded sending their children to school in the wake of the incident. Bohara demanded that the province assembly take up the issue immediately.

Meanwhile, province’s Minister for Internal Affairs and Law Prakash Bahadur Shah said his ministry could not mobilise the local police administration due to certain provisions in the present legal system. “Provincial Home Minister has no right to order Chief District Officer and District Police Chief,” said Shah, adding that his powers are limited to coordinating with the CDO and District Police Chief. (PR)

Published: 18-09-2018 07:31

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