DAILEKH, Jan 20: After completing recording of statement of those accused in the murder of journalist Dekendra Thapa, police have started field investigation to substantiate evidence for the case.
A police team on Sunday left for Dwari of Naumule area where journo Thapa was tortured and allegedly buried alive. The team led by investigation officer Binod Sharma will interview locals near the incident spot and collecting further information on the murder. The team is expected to spend three days in the area to gather more evidence.
The team will prepare a detailed report beginning from the abduction of Thapa, torture he underwent at the hands of the Maoist cadres, and the circumstance of his killing. “We will hold discussion regarding Thapa´s murder with different people and political party representatives in the area,” Sharma informed.
Meanwhile, the numbers of accused in the murder case has reached 15, according to police sources. According to a police source, the five arrested in connection with the murder in their statements lately have said six more people were involved in the murder. Following the revelation, police have deployed a team in civvies to nab the accused, which now number 10.
According to investigation officer Sharma, three people were involved in abducting Thapa, two were involved in holding him hostage, nine were involved in torturing and killing him and one had ordered Thapa´s execution. According to police, the six new accused are said to be hiding in Kailali, Banke, Bardiya, Surkhet and Kathmandu.
“Had the accused been in the district, they would have already been arrested,” said Sharma. “Since they are not in the district, they could not be arrested immediately,” he added. However, Sharma denied divulging the name of the six saying it could affect the investigation process.
Civil Society leaders have alleged that the Central Investigation Bureau of Nepal Police is under political pressure and the bureau is not cooperating to arrest the accused. Police have still been unable to arrest Bhaktiram Lamichhane Magar, whose involvement in the murder was revealed through the recorded statement of the five accused currently in police custody.
Meanwhile, the District Police Office, Dailekh has sent a special team to arrest four accused, who are reportedly outside the district. “We are forced to send a special team from our office itself as police in other districts did not cooperate with us to nab the accused,” said a police officer at District Police Office, Dailekh. Sharma further said that the team will come up with some result within next 24 hours.