KATHMANDU, July 6: At a time when local media is abuzz with reports of Amar Bahadur Bam, who has been slapped death penalty on charge of murdering an Indian businessman in Dubai, another Nepali national is awaiting death penalty in a UAE prison for murdering his compatriot in January 2009.
It is learnt that a local court in Sharjah has given death sentence to Durga Bahadur Sunar of Chitre VDC-5 in Parbat district for murdering Ganesh Bahadur Basnet of Hansponsa VDC-2 in Sunsari district. The verdict is to be implemented by September.
According to a diplomatic communication made by the UAE´s Foreign Ministry to Nepal government, the court has given September deadline to Sunar family to make an agreement with the victim´s family for amnesty as per UAE laws. Sunar,30, can walk free if the victim family agrees in writing to pardon him.
Foreign Ministry officials, who have been taking initiatives to save Sunar from death row, said the possibility to save Sunar is slim as they have so far been unable to trace the victim´s family. "Though we are in contact with Sunar family, we have not yet been able to contact the victim´s kin," said officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Late Basnet is found to have acquired his citizenship certificate and passport from Sunsari district. Both Sunar and late Basnet were working at Al Shirawi Equipment Company in Sharjah in the UAE.
As per the request of the ministry, the District Administration Office in Sunsari had sent separate teams to locate Basnet family in their original home address in Hansponsa VDC. "But our repeated efforts to help establish contact with both Sunar and Basnet family have failed. Sunar can be saved only if the victim family agrees to pardon him," the officials said.
Sunar family has agreed even to provide ´blood money´ if the victim´s family demands. "Time is running out as not even three months remain for the execution date. We still don´t know the whereabouts of the Basnet family. We are in a dilemma as to what to do next," said Rajendra Kumar Gurung, who hails from Sunar´s village in Parbat.
Sunar visited UAE some nine years ago for employment. "It will be difficult to save Sunar if we fail to trace Basnet family in the next 10-15 days. We need to forward the UAE court the consent of the victim´s family for pardon," foreign ministry officials further said.