Nepal Police has arrested Ishan Lamichhane, 20, for allegedly misusing a high ranking police officer's insignia in a social media app called 'clubhouse' which is rapidly gaining popularity among youths across the world.

Bhaktapur District Court sent Lamichhane to seven-day judicial custody for further investigation.

Lamichhane had used the insignia of Shailesh Thapa Kshetri, the chief of Nepal Police, and also, his name in the audio-based chat room. Nepal police have also said that the arrestee had used the insignia of other high ranking police personnel, along with their real names and conveyed misleading information and frequently defamed Nepal Police.

Lamichhane often used to mock Nepal Police saying that the chat group was overcrowded with unwanted people and the chief of Nepal Police would remove them from the group. The participants often use derogatory words against officers of Nepal Police as satirical and libellous comments keep on coming from hosts and users such as Lamichhane, according to police.

Senior Superintendent of Police Nabinda Aryal at Cyber Bureau of Nepal Police said that the Club House app was being misused by youths.

"This is also because one can join any chat room in the app without having to reveal his/ her true identity and can make even lewd comments defaming others," he added.

Aryal, however, also stressed that they did not intend to violate the public's right to use social media. "We want the public to become more careful while using social media as one can easily fall victim to various cyber crimes," Aryal added.

Nepal police have started the search for other friends of Lamichhane, who were also involved in misusing and defaming Nepal Police.

Clubhouse has garnered a massive number of users within a short time. As of June first week this year, it has over 10 million users worldwide.

A version of this article appears in the print on June 23 2021, of The Himalayan Times.