Government probe hints at Indian security personnel’s involvement in Dhami disappearanceIts report has recommended that the government take diplomatic initiatives to bring the culprit(s) to book.
The probe panel formed to investigate last month’s incident in which a Darchula youth fell into Mahakali while crossing the river using a cable crossing has concluded involvement of Indian security personnel and recommended that the government take diplomatic initiatives to bring the perpetrator(s) to book.
The panel, formed on August 1, a day after the incident, submitted its report to Home Minister Bal Krishna Khand on Tuesday.
“The report was submitted to the home minister today,” said Phanindra Mani Pokharel, spokesperson for the Home Ministry. “Now it’s up to the government to implement it.”
The five-member panel was headed by Janardan Gautam, a joint secretary at the Home Ministry.
On July 30, Jaya Singh Dhami, 33, from Khangdang Mal of Byans Rural Municipality-2 in Darchula fell into Mahakali while crossing the river using an improvised cable crossing locally known as tuin. Media reports based on eyewitness accounts suggested that a Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) person had untangled the cable just when Dhami was about to reach the Indian side, across the river.
After falling into the river, Dhami was swept away and his whereabouts remains unknown.
The Gautam-led probe panel was initially given 10 days to submit its report. However, its term was extended three times.
The Sher Bahadur Deuba government was facing criticism for failing to make the report public and taking a position on Dhami’s disappearance.
Instead of making the report public, the government on August 26 announced Rs1 million compensation for Dhami’s family, attracting more criticism, as many considered it as an attempt to quell growing demands that Deuba take a firm stand on the incident.
There were also concerns if the Deuba government was reluctant to make the report public so as not to antagonise India.
The probe panel submitted the report, exactly a month after the incident, but the government has not made the details public yet.
The probe panel has recommended that the government make arrangements for the livelihood of Dhami’s family and education of the children.
Tika R Pradhan contributed reporting