DAILEKH, Jan 7: In a gruesome revelation on journalist Dekendra Thapa´s murder, the accused while recording their statements with the police have admitted to burying Thapa even before he breathed his last.
Police had recently arrested five Maoist cadres on the charge of abducting and subsequently murdering Thapa eight years ago. Of those arrested, four are district-level leaders and cadres of the UCPN (Maoist) while one is affiliated to the breakaway CPN-Maoist.
Police had arrested Laxmi Ram Gharti Magar of Dwari VDC-1, Dailekh, on Thursday, four years after Thapa´s wife Laxmi lodged a written complaint against the four district-level leaders and cadres of the UCPN (Maoist).
According to the police, Laxmi Ram, in his statement, said Thapa was taken to various places after his abduction on June 26, 2004. Thapa was brutally thrashed. “We took Dekendra to my home after he fell unconscious with his hands and legs broken,” Inspector Binod Sharma, who is investigating the case, quoted Laxmi Ram as saying.
“Dekendra asked for water and I gave him some. We buried him in a land nearby my house after two of my friends pronounced him dead after feeling his pulse,” Sharma quoted the accused as saying. Laxmi Ram also informed though they were not sure if Thapa had already died, they buried him.
According to the police, the accused have also confessed that then CPN-Maoist had issued a directive to kill Dekendra. In his statement, Laxmi Ram, informed that Dekendra was tortured for questioning irregularities in a drinking water project and for participating in a function attended by then King Gyanendra.
“It has become clear that the district-level leadership of then CPN-Maoist issued a directive to kill Thapa,” added inspector Sharma. “The guilty should be brought to book irrespective of his position.” Sharma also informed that the initial investigations have indicated involvement of nine persons in Thapa´s murder.
While recording his statement with the police, Laxmi Ram has pleaded guilty and sought a harsh punishment for his crime. “I am now in a position to accept the crime that I committed without fear. Only when I am punished will Dekendra´s soul rest in peace,” he was quoted as saying.
Acting on Magar´s statement, police arrested Bir Bahadur KC of Baluwatar VDC-7, Nirak Bahadur Gharti Magar of Baluwatar-9, and Harilal Pun Magar of Dwari VDC-3, on Friday. Jay Bahadur Shahi, a resident of Raniban VDC-1, who was holed up in former lawmaker Bharat Regmi´s house, was also arrested on Saturday.
Meanwhile, CPN-Maoist has demanded unconditional release of its cadres. Issuing a press statement, party spokesperson Pampha Bhusal on Sunday accused the police of terrifying the people and arresting innocent people. The party has also demanded action against the police for the “murder” of Shailendra Nath Tiwari, Aabadh state committee member of the party. Tiwari, who was arrested by the Rupandehi police on Wednesday, was found dead.
|"Comrade Shailendra Tiwari was murdered in the police post after arrest. We demand investigation into the murder and compensation to family of the deceased," reads the statement