National

Murder charge filed against ruling party leader in Dolakha

- RAJENDRA MANANDHAR, DOLAKHA

Jan 19, 2019-

A leader of the ruling Nepal Communist Party has been charged with murder that was committed nearly two decades ago. The District Attorney’s Office registered a case against Shankar Lama in the Dolakha District Court on January 13 over the murder of Chakra Bahadur Budhathoki of Fasku on January 15, 1999. According to the legal provisions, a murder case should be registered in the court within 20 years of the incident.

The case was not highlighted when Lama was the candidate of Dolakha-2 from the then UCPN (Maoist) in 2013. The District Police Office had handed over the case to the District Attorney Office based on the complaint filed by the victim’s family.

In the charge sheet, the family has claimed that Lama had murdered Chakra Bahadur at his home on the night of January 15, 1999. Chakra Bahadur was attacked with a khukuri while he was asleep.

The case drew the public attention only when the Shailung Police Post was issued with a warrant to arrest Lama. The District Attorney registers murder cases in the court on the basis of police investigation. Though police had collected inquiry deeds of the incident initially, the case had gone cold.

According to Information Officer of the District Police Office Madhav Kafle, such cases should go under the registration process even though the prevailing law remains silent on murder incidents of the war era. “Other old cases are also being registered in the court, but few draw as much public attention,” said Kafle.

On January 16, 1999, Guna Bahadur Budhathoki, had filed a written complaint against Lama after his brother was murdered in Fasku. According to the recorded statements of the deceased’s wife and neighbours, Lama is the main kingpin in Chakra Bahadur’s murder. Three other people who were involved in the incident remain unidentified.

Lama, who had gone underground during Maoist insurgency, has been active in politics of late. But he went into hiding after District Joint Attorney Rajan Hamal filed the case in the court demanding life imprisonment against him.

Published: 19-01-2019 09:52

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