Karnali Province

Case filed against eight cops for torture, evidence destruction in Nirmala rape and murder case

  • Six were taken into custody after they were produced before Kanchanpur District Court on Thursday

Mar 7, 2019-

A case has been lodged by the Office of District Attorney at Kanchanpur District Court on Wednesday against eight police officials for their involvement in torture and evidence destruction in connection with Nirmala Pant rape and murder case.

The 13-year-old school girl was raped and murdered on July 26 last year in Bhimdutta Municipality, Kanchanpur. Her body was found in a sugarcane field the next day.

Six of the eight police personnel were immediately taken into custody and produced before the court on Thursday, according to Hari Krishna Awasthi, registrar at Kanchanpur District Court.

“The court has started recording statements of the accused from Thursday,” said Awasthi. “The accused policemen will remain in custody until the final hearing.”

The court has decided to complete recording the statements of the accused by Sunday and the hearing of the case will start from Monday onwards.

Awasthi said that Superintendent of Police, Dilli Raj Bista, the then chief of Kanchanpur Police, who was dismissed for mishandling the case, and Deputy Superintendent of Police Angur GC, who was suspended, did not show up at the court.

Along with Bista, a case had been lodged earlier against suspended DSP duo Angur GC and Gyan Bahadur Shetty, and Inspector Ekendra Khadka for torturing Dilip Singh Bista.

Dilip was earlier arrested in suspicion of his involvement in rape and murder of Nirmala.

The four cops had tried to pin the blame on Dilip for Nirmala’s rape and murder, leading to protests in which a 14-year-old protester, Sunny Khuna, had died in police firing. Dilip was later freed after he was found innocent.

While four cops face the charge of meting out torture and destroying evidence, four have been accused of destroying evidence.

Earlier, a probe-team formed under Additional Inspector General Dhiru Basnyat had accused 18 police officers, including the eight policemen against whom cases have been filed at Kanchanpur District Court, for tampering with the evidence and trying to frame Dilip as the culprit.   

In November last year, two sacked police officers, SP Bista and Inspector Bhatta, had appealed for reinstatement through a written petition to the Cabinet via the Home Ministry.

It has been eight months since the teen girl was raped and murdered, but police have failed to find the guilty, while the government has time and again made claims that police were close to nabbing the culprit(s).

Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa, while addressing the Upper House on February 20, had said that the investigation was going in full swing.  

On December last year, police had arrested Pradip Rawal and Bishal Chaudhary. But they were released after their DNA did not match with the victim’s vaginal swab. The duo were also said to have admitted to the crime during interrogation.

But the duo later denied the crime. They had also accused police of torturing them during interrogation.

Published: 07-03-2019 15:16

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