Nepal | May 29, 2020

Home minister’s brother released on bail

Five others sent to jail

Ujjwal Satyal
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Kathmandu, September 18

Kathmandu District Court today set free Naresh Bahadur Thapa, a younger brother of Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa, on bail of Rs 100,000, while sending five others to jail until final verdict.

An order to this effect was passed by Judge Medini Prasad Paudel following today’s hearing. Those sent to jail include Pawan Khadka, Birbal Bhattarai, Suren Nagarkoti Balami, Shailesh Prajapati and Binod Lama, said court registrar Ananda Prasad Shrestha. The court also issued an arrest warrant against Javed Anwar Bin, another defendant, in absentia.

The Central Investigation Bureau had arrested Naresh on September 8 suspecting his links with an extortion racket spearheaded by gangster Samirman Singh Basnet from behind bars.

Samirman is also the alleged mastermind of the 2017 murder of Sharad Kumar Gauchan, then chairperson of the Federation of Contractors’ Associations of Nepal.

Naresh was taken into custody by the CIB following statements of two of Samirman’s accomplices — Pawan and Suren — who were arrested by Metropolitan Police Circle, Maharajgunj, earlier this month on the charge of extorting businesspersons. Both had accused Naresh of having a nexus with Samirman and possibly with gangsters based in UAE. Naresh had also admitted to meeting Samirman in the Central Jail.

Police produced Naresh and five others before the court on September 12. CIB Director Deputy Inspector General Niraja Bahadur Shahi said Naresh and his associates were held due to their alleged involvement in issuing extortion threats to several contractors and businesspersons.

Naresh had remained in Basundhara-based Chirayu Hospital after being arrested, due to poor health.


A version of this article appears in print on September 19, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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