Kathmandu, January 28
Aanchal Bam, 14, and Anita Bam, 20, aka Roshani and Babita Bam of Bhimdatta Municipality, Kanchanpur, who called a press meet in Kathmandu today to complain that their right to privacy and human rights was being violated in the investigation process of the rape and murder of 13-year-old Nirmala, were bombarded with questions from journalists.
The Bam sisters had come to Kathmandu a few days ago to say they were defamed and their character had been assassinated by various media and human rights activists during police investigation.
The Bam sisters said that they were repeatedly defamed by continuous questioning from the media and some activists who had suggested they were ‘sex workers.’ They also accused Nirmala’s supporters and the media of giving wrong information about their involvement in the rape and murder without evidence.
Roshani and Babita pleaded they were as innocent as Nirmala and hoped the culprits would be arrested soon. They said, “As earlier, we are willing to support media and police the investigation, but, we need to be freed from the stigma attached to us.” They also pleaded with the media not to be biased against them. As the Bam sisters started talking in front of scores of journalists and dozens of cameras that covered them, they were bombarded with questions.
Many journalists appeared aggressive in their tone and asked the sisters duo questions such as why they were they not saddened about losing their friend, why would they allure Nirmala at their home to pay back her money, why did police come to their home early at 5:00am the next day while police were not ready to hear complaint from Nirmala’s mother, why had Babita said Nirmala might have eloped but they did not care and so on. The two girls faced the questions and tried to answer each of them, but only to be interrupted by journalists again and again.
Sabitri Subedi, an activist who is facilitating their stay here in Kathmandu said they would opt for legal remedy against those who defamed the Bam sisters.
A version of this article appears in print on January 29, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.