SC seeks clarification on detainees

Kathmandu, February 5:

The Supreme Court today ordered the Ministry of Defence, the Royal Nepalese Army headquarters, Rajdalgan, and the RNA’s Bhairavnath Barracks for the second time to produce before the apex court clarifications as to why the authorities were yet to respond to an SC order on January 1.

An SC official told this daily today the authorities were yet to respond to the apex court on their false report regarding the detention of the alleged Maoists Ranjit Darnal, Amrit Darnal, Rajendra Chaurel and Pushpa Raj Basnet.

“We are stunned by the indifference shown by the authorities towards the Supreme Court order,” the official said, adding:

“Hence we have requested them to submit their explanations again.”

The authorities had submitted written explanation to the SC claiming the alleged Maoists were not in army detention. However, an inspection team of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) had found the alleged Maoists at the two army barracks. Following the NHRC’s findings, a division bench of Justices Ram Prasad Shrestha and Top Bahadur Magar had sought clarification from the authorities as to why they had submitted such false claims before the SC.

Responding to show cause notices on separate habeas corpus petitions, the Rajdalgan and Bhairavnath barracks had told the SC some five months ago that the alleged Maoists were not in army detention.

The NHRC had send a report to the Supreme Court saying that its team had found four of the Maoists mentioned in the habeas corpus petitions in army detention — Ranjit Darnal, Amrit Darnal and Rajendra Chaurel at the Rajdalgan barrack and Pushpa Raj Basnet at the Bhairavnath barrack.

The NHRC report said the Maoist suspects were held without following proper legal procedures. “The authorities provided no legal facilities to the detainees. They were also not allowed to meet lawyers and relatives. The arrests were made by crossing costitutional bounds,” the report said.