SP, inspector appeal for lost jobs

  • Nirmala rape and murder
- NAYAK PAUDEL, Kathmandu

Dec 3, 2018-

The two sacked police officers—SP Dilli Raj Bista and Inspector Jagadish Prasad Bhatta—have petitioned the Cabinet through the Home Ministry for their reinstatement.

The ministry on October 25 sacked them for their role in tampering with the evidence related to the July rape and murder of 13-year-old Nirmala Pant in Kanchanpur. Inspector General Sarbendra Khanal had recommended the action based on the reports of teams formed to look into the Kanchanpur police’s dubious role in investigating the case.

Teams led by Additional Inspector General Dhiru Basnyat and Joint-secretary Hari Prasad Mainali had probed the incident and submitted their reports.

Bhatta and Bista filed the petitions on November 25 and November 27, respectively, following the provision for an individual to request reinstatement until 35 days of being sacked.

“We have the right to file the petition. The accusations have nothing to do with us. We’re waiting for the government’s response,” Bista told the Post.

Both the officers are accused of tampering with the evidence at the site where Nirmala was found dead on July 27. The petitions come at a time when people demanding justice for Nirmala are pressing the government to take tougher action against the officers.

“It was a natural process given the duo’s right to seek reinstatement from the day of being sacked. The past two days have also shown how the government is trying to suppress our voices,” said Hima Bista, a women rights activist and an active #JusticeforNirmala campaigner.

While sacking the duo, the Home Ministry cited Clause (1) of Sub-rule (2) of Rule 109 of the Nepal Police Regulations-2071BS, which holds that the sacked officers qualify for government services in future. However, Clause (2) of Sub-rule (2) of Rule 109 of the regulations authorises the firing of an officer disqualifying them for future stints at a government office.

On December 1, posters demanding justice for Nirmala were torn and 12 individuals arrested from Maitighar Mandala in Kathmandu. Police officials took down the posters in Pokhara on Saturday.

Police also warned protesters not to stage more protests citing the order from “higher authorities”. “Public outrage has increased. It seems that it’s ‘State vs Citizens’ now. While protests will pile pressure on the government, we will soon be taking legal steps too,” said Bista.

Published: 03-12-2018 07:12

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