Innocent man jailed for 18 days

Kavre, February 26

An innocent man of Kavre was imprisoned for 18 days on a rape and a murder case, thanks to poor investigation of police.

Arrest warrants issued from Sindhupalchowk Court put Resham Rokka of Panchkhal Municipality-6 of Kavre in prison for 18 days. Later, he was acquitted of the charge following an order from the Supreme Court.

Panchkhal police on January 26 arrested Rokka for murder and then handed him over to Sindhupalchowk police. The following day Rokka was charged in a rape case as well. After hearing the case, Sindhupalchowk District Court sentenced Rokka to a prison term of three years, 10 months and 23 days. He was implicated in a rape case involving a minor that had taken place 26 years ago in the then Pangutar VDC-2 of Sindhupalchowk.

It’s interesting to note that police had arrested a man named Ramesh Bahadur Sarki of then Pangutar VDC 26 years ago following the rape incident. Sindhupalchowk court had slapped four years prison time on Sarki, however, he walked out on bail after serving one month and seven days. Sarki had then appealed at the Supreme Court against the district court’s verdict, but he lost the case. He is currently on the ‘fugitives’ list of the police.

The same day Rokka was sent to prison, his wife Suntali filed a habeas corpus writ at the apex court. The court on February 11 ordered the police to release Rokka by declaring him innocent.

“I told them that I was not involved in any of the charges but they didn’t hear me and put me behind bars. Thank God, the Supreme Court finally gave justice,” Rokka said.

The district court had recommended Rokka the prison term in connection with the rape case due to discrepancy in a police report identifying Resham Bahadur Rokka as Ramesh Bahadur Sarki.

Sindhupalchowk police chief SP Mohan Pokharel, on his part, pleaded guilty for implicating the innocent person. Ever since Rokka was arrested, hundreds of people had staged sit-in at the Sindhupalchowk police and the court time and again, accusing the police of implicating an innocent person by releasing the guilty one. Even the plaintiff had reached out to the police vouching for the innocence of Rokka.