Corruption slur on Armed Police Force

Itahari, October 15:

Passengers have accused Armed Police Force (APF) personnel of taking bribe from them while crossing Koshi River on motorboats.

Though the motorboats were managed free of cost by the Nepal Army, APF personnel have been taking bribe ranging from Rs 20 to Rs 200 from each passenger, according to the victims.

“They charged me Rs 120 saying I would be ferried in a safer way,” said a victim, Laxman Magar of Itahari, while he was returning Kathmandu after celebrating Dashain. “We are astonished to have noticed that police are indulging in bribery in the name of free service,” he said.

An army man also echoed Magar. He said that he has come to know that some AFP personnel have been taking bribe from the passengers to cross the river. “We have complained about the matter to the higher authority. They (APF personnel) have dented the image of the Nepal Army be taking bribe,” said the army man on the condition of anonymity.

He further said some civil police personnel have also been collecting money from the passengers beyond their notice.

With police continuing to fleece them, passengers have demanded an end to the bribery in the name of free motorboat service.

CDO Durga Bhandari also said that he the case of bribery has come to his notice. Such malpractice would be investigated soon and the guilty won’t be spared, he said. A senior APF officer of eastern headquarters assured that the accused would be booked. Countering the victims’ claim, he also accused some passengers of forcing APF personnel to take bribe.