Kanchanpur in turmoil

  • Two suspects arrested
  • Indefinite curfew since Friday

Dhangadi, August 25

In the latest development on the Nirmala Panta murder case, police in Kanchanpur arrested her friend Roshani Bam and her sister Anita Bam.

Nirmala, a resident of Bhimdatta Municipality, who had gone to Roshani’s home to fetch a notebook on July 26, was found dead in a sugarcane field the next day.

Kanchanpur District Police Office Chief SP Kuber Kathayat said the sister duo was arrested from their home today after an arrest warrant was issued.”

As per police sources, SP Dilliraj Bista’s son and Bhimdatta Municipality Mayor Surendra Bista’s nephew are being watched closely in connection with the case. SP Dilliraj, the former police chief of the district, was recalled to the home ministry a few days ago over his questionable role in investigation of the rape and murder case.

After dilly-dallying for 26 days, police made public 41-year-old Dilipsingh Bista of Bagphant, Bhimdatta Municipality, identifying him as the murder suspect. This move, however, only added fuel to the fire. Locals accused police of parading the wrong man as murder suspect and intensified their agitation, leading to one death.

Fourteen-year-old Shani Khuna of Bhimdattanagar was killed and five others were injured when police opened fire at a demonstration in Bhimdattanagar yesterday. Shani’s kin received his body today. The deceased child’s father BirBahadur has demanded action against the person, who shot his son dead.

Of the injured, Chetan Bhatta, Kabindra Singh and Damodar Khatri are being treated at Dhangadi-based Seti Zonal

Hospital. Two others, namely, Suresh Prakash Chataut and Umesh Deuba have been referred to Kohalpur Medical College, said Dr Govind Rawat of the zonal hospital.

Dhangadi Sub-metropolis Mayor Nripa Bahadur Bada, who met doctors treating the injured, said, “We’re ready to extend all kinds of help for treatment of the injured.

Today also, protests were held in Jhalari and Belauri of Kanchanpur; Dipayal of Doti; Dhangadi and Attariya of Kailali and Dadeldhura. Agitators accused the state of suppressing the public’s voice for justice instead of finding the real perpetrator(s) of the murder.

Province 7 government, in an emergency meeting, asked all sides to exercise restraint and help in the investigation. The meeting also expressed sadness at the death of ShaniKhuna.

According to the province government Spokesperson and Minister of Internal Affairs and Law Prakas Bahadur Shah, the government will provide compensation to the family of the deceased and bear the cost of treatment of injured persons and security personnel.

Meanwhile, the government probe team today held discussion with local representatives of political parties and civil society.

The five-member probe committee formed by the Ministry of Home Affairs led by Joint-secretary Hari Prasad Mainali started its work yesterday.

Kanchanpur District Administration Office has continued with the curfew clamped in Bhimdatta town area since last evening.