Nepal | July 06, 2020

Police inspector mercilessly beats up woman

Sabitri Dhakal
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Kathmandu, February 28

Nepal Police is back in news for all the wrong reasons: mercilessly beating up a young woman, her toddler wrapped in her arms, and marshalling her out of a posh residence at Bhaisepati on Thursday afternoon. As if that was not enough, the police then kept the woman and her toddler in detention at the Metropolitan Police Range all day.

According to a video that went viral on social media today, the young woman is Hima Shrestha. The 34-year-old had her 10-month-old baby locked in her arms when the police batons rained on her. The police officer in uniform is Inspector Devi Prasad Paudel from Metropolitan Police Range, Jawalakhel.

Paudel mercilessly thrashed Hima with a baton and then kept her in custody for six hours or so at the police range before releasing her after office hours later in the evening.

“It hurt all day and I requested for my medical check-up. But they didn’t take me to hospital,” Shrestha said, showing bruise marks on both her legs.

The woman suffered bruises on her thighs and calves inflicted by the police beating.

“Just as I stepped out of the police station, I took a cab and headed for Green City Hospital in Basundhara for a medical check-up,” she told THT.

This image shows bruises Hima Shrestha suffered on her legs on Thursday’s police baton charge in Bhainsepati, as photo captured at her rented room in Gaurighat, Kathmandu, on Friday, February 28, 2020. Photo: Sabitri Dhakal/THT

Shrestha said she was thrashed for being a part of the group that was protesting against a senior army officer who had abandoned a woman with who he had a relationship with for 17 years.

Shrestha and a group of women had reached the army officer’s residence at Bhaisepati on Thursday afternoon to broker talks between him and his long time concubine. The officer allegedly had an extramarital relationship with the woman for 17 years. According to Shrestha, the army officer had lied to the woman that he was unmarried.

“The army officer had been supporting her for 17 years, but stopped visiting her six months ago,” said Shrestha. “We had gone to his residence to discuss the issue so that the woman wouldn’t have to suffer.”

“We wanted to talk with the officer and his family, but they called the police. Just as the police reached the house they started beating the woman’s supporters on charge of trespassing,” said Shrestha, alleging, “I was mercilessly hit at least eight times by the police inspector. Even my 10-month-old son was not spared.”

The video of the incident has drawn ire of rights activists and the public.

A press release issued by the police said that four women were taken into custody for trespassing and vandalising officer’s property.

 


A version of this article appears in print on February 29, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.


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