KANCHANPUR, Dec 20: Police have intentionally delayed publicizing the DNA test reports of two prime suspects, one of whom has reportedly confessed to the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta because the reports “do not match” with the crime scene evidences.
Police have kept Pradip Rawal and Bishal Chaudhary under custody in the latest spate of arrests in connection to the almost five-month-old case. Although police had released other suspects, the two have been held back under custody purportedly for DNA tests.
Police said they have decided not to reveal the DNA test reports for a few more days.
"We haven't yet sent anyone to bring the report here," said Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Kuber Kadayat, chief of Kanchanpur Police, adding, "It might take a few more days."
Seeking anonymity, a high-ranking police official informed Republica that police are trying to find other evidences after the DNA tests of both the suspects did not match with the vaginal swab collected from Nirmala's body.
According to the source, the statement given by Rawal clearly proves his involvement in the crime but police are trying to find other evidences or witnesses to confirm his involvement.
Rawal, a resident of Bhimdatta Municipality-18, was arrested some weeks ago from Kathmandu. Following the statement of Rawal, police arrested Bishal Chaudhary and Dinesh Chaudhary of Bhagatpur on December 6. After interrogation, police released Dinesh the next day. It has been learnt that police are planning to release Bishal as his DNA did not match with the vaginal swab of the victim.
Reportedly, Rawal has admitted that he killed Nirmala by choking her neck after raping her in the sugarcane field. He has allegedly stated that he knew Nirmala from before and had taken her to the sugarcane field with the ill-intention of raping her.
Following the arrest of Chaudhary and Rawal, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Sarbendra Khanal had publicly announced that the police are almost about to solve the case. Similarly, Minister for Defense Ishwar Pokharel openly stated that the culprits have already been arrested and will be publicized soon.
However, the family members and relatives of both the suspects have been staging protests accusing police of trying to frame innocent people. Earlier, police had arrested Dilip Bista, a mentally challenged person portrayed him as the culprit. However, the locals accused police of taking advantage of Bista's illness to protect the real culprit. Later, he was released after his DNA did not match.
As a probe committee has indicated negligence of police and their efforts in destroying evidences in the case, questions have been raised whether the vaginal swab that police collected really belongs to the victim.