DAILKH, Jan 17: District Court Dailekh on Thursday remanded the five persons accused in the murder of Dekendra Thapa to 12 more days in judical custody for further investigations. This is the third time their judicial custody has been extended. However, other four accused in the murder are still absconding allegedly due to police inaction in arresting them.
According to a police officer at the District Police Office, Dailkeh, other district police offices are not cooperating in arresting the accused.
The officer, who asked to be unnamed, also said a ´concerned police office´ did not arrest the accused even after getting information and location about the accused.
The locals suspect that the absconding fugitive must be hand in glove with the police officers to avoid their arrest. “Dailekh police has set an example of best policing by arresting five of the accused within 24 hours of the court order. Some police offices concerned did not arrest the other accused even when the offices were provided with the information and whereabouts regarding the culprits,” said civil society leader Bhesraj Thapa.
“When Dailekh police could arrest the accused within one day, it is hard to believe that the other police offices could not do the same,” said investigation officer, Binod Sharma. “It has already been two weeks since wrote to the offices in the districts concerned with details about the accused, but they have not yet responded,” Sharma added. He hoped that the remaining accused would be arrested soon as Dailekh police office is sending a special police team to the districts.
From the statements of accused Bam Bahadur Khadka ´ Arun´ of Chhiudipusakot, Bam Bahadur Khadka ´ Mukti´ of Katti, Keshav Khadka and Lachhiram Ghartimagar, who were categorically named in the complaint, it is learnt that police were found wanting. Family members of slain journalist Thapa have alleged that police came under the influence of the ruling Maoists as Bhaktiram Lamichhanemagar of Dwari, one of the accused, is still roaming freely inside Nepal.
Dailekh District President of the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) Puskar Thapa warned that journalists themselves would work to nab the accused if police are unable to arrest the absconding.
“When police are not arresting the accused even after getting full information, we suspect that police are under pressure to not arrest the accused,” said Krishna Kumar BC , Nepali Congress district president.
After a Supreme Court order to the concerned offices to proceed with the case countermanding the instruction of the attorney general to halt the proceedings, the remaining task of recording statements of Bir Bahadur KC, Jaya Bahadur Shahi, and Harilal Pun was completed on Thursday.
Police on January 5 had arrested Bir Bahadur KC of Baluwatar VDC-7, Nirak Bahadur Gharti Magar of Baluwatar-9, Harilal Pun Magar of Dwari VDC-3, Jay Bahadur Shahi, a resident of Raniban VDC-1 and Laxmi Ram Gharti Magar of Dwari VDC-1 of Dailekh in connection with the murder.