DSP Ojha to lead Kanchapur rape-murder investigation

DHANGADHI: In the latest development leading to Nirmala Panta's rape and murder, a police team led by Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) has been formed to take the investigation ahead.

According to Superintendent of Police (SP) Kuber Kathayat at Kanchanpur District Police Office, DSP Krishna Raj Ojha will lead the probe team.

Earlier, DSP Dipendra Khadka was given the responsibility to carry out investigation into the case.

SP Kathayat also clarified about the role of the recently formed high-level probe committee which was constituted under the Home Ministry Joint Secretary Hari Prasad Mainali. He said the committee was assigned to give their opinion, analyse the role of the police and brief about progress of the investigation to the government.

"The high-level probe committee is obliged to submit its report to the government and not to carry out thorough investigation into the case itself," SP Kathayat said.

He further said that the committee is working as per the 'Terms of Reference' (ToR) provided by the government.

"Police presented Roshni Bam and her sister Babita Bam aka Anita before the District Court yesterday and remanded them to custody for six days for investigation," SP Kathayat shared further.

The victim’s family and locals had appealed to the police department to arrest the Bam sisters and restart investigation from their house.

Earlier, on July 26, Nirmala Panta had gone to the Bam sisters' house to do her assignments. The following day her body was found in a nearby sugarcane field.

The situation boiled-over after the police paraded a 41-year-old man as the prime suspect. Many locals suspected that the move was actually a police ploy to save the real perpetrator by bringing him forward as a dummy culprit.

Following Nirmala's incident, on August 24, a 14-year-old boy was shot dead and 13 others sustained bullet injuries after police opened fire as they were protesting in front of the District Administration Office seeking justice for Nirmala.

Accused sent to Kathmandu for medical check-up

Meanwhile, police have decided to send the 41-year-old man, who was paraded as the main perpetrator, to Kathmandu for a medical checkup.

SP Kathayat said, "The suspect will undergo medical tests and other technical tests to diagnose his mental state in a bid to measure his involvement in the crime."

After the brutal rape and murder of Nirmala, people have been carrying out protests demanding justice for the 13-year-old.