MAHENDRANAGAR, Sept 30: Women's rights activists in Mahendranagar have begun a sit-in protest demanding that the government make public a report prepared by a high-level commission investigating the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta.
A large number of women assembled at Madanchowk in Mahendranagar at around 9 am Saturday and began their sit-in . Mina Bhandari, coordinator of a Civil Struggle Committee informed that the main aim of the protest is to exert pressure on the authorities to unveil the report. On August 23, the Home Ministry formed a high-level probe committee headed by Under- Secretary Hari Prasad Mainali to investigate Nirmala's rape and murder.
After investigating the case for a month, the committee submitted its report to Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa recently. Amid ongoing speculation and rumors, people across the country are curious to know what is in the report. However, even after waiting for days, the locals are unable to learn about the details contained in it .
"We feel the government is trying to shield the culprit by withholding the report from the public," said Bhandari, adding, "That's why we have decided to take to the streets." Apart from the women, all the locals have also demanded the public release of the report as soon as possible. The protesters have threatened to continue their sit-in until the guilty are booked .
Nirmala's father Yagyaraj Panta has expressed disappointment at the authorities withholding the report from the public. "Why this dillydallying when the committee has already submitted its report? We have our suspicions," said Panta.