Wednesday Jul 6, 2022
Wednesday Jul 6, 2022

Rape and violence are on the rise

Here’s a list of some cases that shocked the nation


Nepalnews
2022 May 27, 6:07, Kathmandu

According to the Women's Rehabilitation Centre (WOREC) crimes against women, rapes and sexual exploitation are alarmingly on the rise. Nepal Police also reported a rise in violence against women in 2021. The WOREC report in 2021 says, “A total of 17,790 women and girls were raped in the last ten years and it has been found that cases of rape have been increasing every year by 20 per cent.” 

Nepal Police registered 144 cases of rape and 687 cases of attempts to rape in the last fiscal year. Likewise, a total of 1,221 women and girls were raped from March to August 2020. Data shows that seven women or girls are raped daily in Nepal on an average.

Over the years, Nepal has had major rape and violence cases that shocked everyone, leading to people coming out on the streets to protest. However, the cases are usually forgotten by the public until yet another major case is reported.

NepalNews lists some major cases over the years and what happened with them. 


Namita-Sunita rape and murder case 1980

The Namita-Sunita murder case was filed in 1980 when three girls, Neera, Namita, and Sunita were raped and murdered while they were visiting Pokhara. While the investigation went on, the culprits were never found or arrested as all the evidence was either destroyed or covered up. Till date, it is still a mystery. Who raped and killed the two girls is still unknown. While Ramita and Sunita’s bodies were found a day apart, Neera’s body was never found or identified. 


Nirmala Pant rape-murder case 2018

The Thirteen-year-old Nirmala Pant, rape and murder case shocked the nation in 2018. Pant was found dead in a sugarcane field near her home, in Kanchanpur district of Sudurpaschim in June. The autopsy concluded that she had been raped and the cause of death was cited as “throttling, that lead to asphyxia and death”. Despite the media traction, this case gathered, and the protest and demand for ‘Justice for Nirmala’ the murderer and rapist are still at large and this case is still unresolved. In 2020, during an interview with Online Khabar, Inspector General Shailesh Thapa Kshetri said, “I wish the investigation would conclude as soon as possible. But, some investigations cannot be restricted to a deadline.” Thapa also talked about how Nepal Police’s failure to crack the mystery of this case has tarnished the organisation’s image, and a successful probe only will correct that.

The popular theory around Nirmala’s case is that the crime was committed by a high-level person who succeeded in destroying all the evidence found during the investigation.

Bhagirathi Bhatta murder 2021

Bhagirathi Bhatta, a 17-year-old girl, was found dead in a community forest that lies between the school and her home on February 3, 2021. She was a 12th grader who was raped and strangled to death. 

Her body was found the day after she went missing. Police and investigators found her body 50 metres below the road in Lovelek Community Forest with fingerprints around her neck and her private parts bloodstained. Her neighbor, a grade 11 student of the same school, was arrested on the charge, 13 days after she went missing, on February 16.

According to police, Dinesh Bhatta confessed to the crime, saying he resorted to the murder in an act of vengeance. As he was underage, the court sent him to the Juvenile Correctional Facility in Dipayal for trial. 


Paul Shah
Paul Shah

Paul Shah Case 2022

A complaint was filed against actor Paul Shah for sexual misconduct by singer Samikshya Adhikari at Tanahu in February 23. The minor had filed a case against the actor in Kaski as well. 

As per the report during a music video shoot in Tanahu, Shah had taken advantage of and had sex with the underage singer.

Tanahu District Police Office had completed the investigation and submitted its report along with the opinion to the Public Prosecutor's Office. On March 24, the district court issued the order to send Shah to judicial custody for investigation. Shah has been in custody since his arrest and the case is ongoing. District Attorney Ram Chandra Sharma said a case has been registered against Shah demanding the imprisonment of up to 12 years, along with reasonable compensation to the survivor. He also said that half of the sentence was demanded for Krishna Joshi, who is reported to be Shah's manager and an accomplice in the offence. 

Shah had surrendered to the police on February 27. However, the minor changed her statement against the actor on April 17 during the trial. She had said in a statement that she was ill and did not know what to say to the police. 

Susmita rape case 2014

The recent Susmita Regmi’s case has sparked a lot of controversy. Regmi had taken to her social media to share her story on how she was drugged and raped eight years ago by the organisers of the Miss Global International beauty pageant, Manoj Pandey, who is in police custody when she was just 16 years old. Regmi alleged that the organisers blackmailed her with videos and photos and continued to sexually abuse her for months.

Pandey was arrested on May 21. After Regmi came out as a rape victim through social media it had prompted many to come to the streets demanding justice for her and amendments of the laws.

According to lawyer, Sallu Tiwari, “In Nepal, the victims above the age of 18 can file a case within a year, and the minors can file a case after a year when they are of legal age. Before the code of conduct was passed, the time length used to be only 35 days. However, a year period is still among the shortest limitation periods in South Asia.”

While drugging and luring a woman to a hotel room can fall under human trafficking, an accused could be sent to judicial custody for up to two months to investigate and find evidence. But another spark to the case has been added by two more minor girls reporting to the police that Pandey also sexually harassed them as aspiring models.

Minister of Law, Justice, and Parliamentary Affairs Govinda Bandi, a senior lawyer himself, has asked the Nepal Law Commission to submit a report about what the government could do about extending the statute of limitation on rape cases. As the existing law, Regmi may not get justice. 


Conclusion

And these are just the cases that grabbed national attention. There were thousands of others that did not get focused on and many more where the victims did not report it out of fear, stigma or threats. 

READ ALSO:

Women's Rehabilitation Centre Nepal Police rape NepalNews Nirmala Pant Bhagirathi Bhatta PAUL SHAH Susmita Victims
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