August 9, 2018 04:30 AM NPT
KATHMANDU, Aug 9: Police have beefed up vigilance against members of the Netra Bikram Chand-led Nepal Communist Party (NCP) after the party intensified its extortion drive and threatened businessmen demanding hefty sums of money. On Tuesday evening police arrested Chand-led party's several cadres including its spokesperson Khadka Bahadur Bishwakarma, who was a former minister for women and social welfare.
A team of Metropolitan Police Range Office arrested Bishwakarma and two other cadres of the party-- Man Bahadur Shrestha and Hari Chandra Acharya--from Chalnakhel, Dakshinkali Municipality on Tuesday evening. On Wednesday, MPRO filed a case against them on the charge of extortion at the Kathmandu District Court. They have been remanded to judicial custody for five days for further investigations, according to DSP Mohan Thapa of MPRO.
On Tuesday evening police arrested Chand-led party's several cadres including its spokesperson Khadka Bahadur Bishwakarma.
“We have increased our vigilance after we received dozens of complaints from businessmen that the party members were threatening them for donations. We got a tip-off that the three were coming to Kathmandu via the Dakshinkali route, we deployed our team and arrested them,” DSP Thapa said.He said that the MPRO has obtained documents and records that the party has extorted over Rs 70 million from many businessmen and industrialists.
Bishwakarma was a former minister for women and social welfare in the first government of the UCPN (Maoist) led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal. Later, he had defected to the Mohan Baidya-led Maoist party. But shortly after joining Baidya's party, he again defected to the Chand-led party.
MPRO has said that it will continue to keep vigil on the activities of the party members.
After reports about the arrest of Bishwakarma and two other cadres emerged, Chand-led party issued a press statement and condemned the arrests. The party has demanded immediate release of its party members. Similarly, the party has announced a series of protests.
In March, police had arrested eight members of the party including its central-level members from Dhankuta.