Court hearing on KL Dugar Group begins

KATHMANDU: The Kathmandu District Court has started proceedings against KL Dugar Group based on a charge sheet filed by the government attorney from today.

The bench of Judge Deependra Adhikari recorded the testimony of the two employees of KL Dugar Group, which will continue on Thursday as tomorrow is a public holiday. It is reported that the trial hearing will start once the testimony recording process is completed.

The prosecutor had filed a charge sheet against the KL Dugar Group on two separate cases of fraud and black-marketing at the Kathmandu District Court on Monday. Altogether 11 people have been accused in these cases. However, police have managed to detain only two employees of KL Dugar Group and rest of the accused continue to remain at large.

Police will again present Aman Jauthan, manager, and Pramod Raj Adhikari, liaison officer of KL Dugar Group, at the court on Thursday, said Dan Bahadur Karki, deputy superintendent of police at the Metropolitan Police Circle, Baneshwor.

Swastik Oil Industries — a flagship business of the KL Dugar Group — had started raising the price of edible oil all of a sudden when the market began witnessing shortage of edible oil due to disruptions in supply of daily essentials from India. Police had impounded five trucks loaded with edible oil that the firm was planning to sell at double the price than during normal times from the warehouse of Swastik Oil Industries on December 3.

Jauthan and Pramod were arrested from the warehouse.

The prosecutor has sought Rs 140 million in fine and recommended five years of imprisonment of the accused in the case of black-marketing. There is also a provision of five-year imprisonment if the fraud charge is proven. The KL Dugar Group will have to face two cases on fraud and black-marketing simultaneously.

It is also reported that seasoned Advocates Shambhu Thapa and Raman Shrestha, among others, will defend the accused. If the court does not issue its verdict in the first hearing, the two detained Dugar employees could be released on bail until the court issues a verdict.

KL Dugar Group’s Chairman Kishan Lal Dugar; Vice Chairman Naresh Dugar; Managing Directors Kumud Dugar, Vikas Dugar, Dharamchand Dugar, Pradeep Kumar Chhajed; Manager Aman Jauthan; Accountants Chandika Prasad Kushwaha, Ramakant Pari, Gautam Dugar; and Liaison Officer Pramod Raj Adhikari have been named as defendants in both the cases.

Even as the arrest warrant has already been issued against the accused, all of them are still at large and the police are said to be on the lookout for them.