The Himalayan TimesThousands rally in support

Bangla Tribune Desk
Published : 19:47, Sep 16, 2018 | Updated : 19:48, Sep 16, 2018

Front page of The Himalayan Times on Sunday (Sept 16).As Nirmala Panta's parents run from pillar to post seeking justice for their daughter, thousands of people spontaneously participated in a peaceful rally today in Kathmandu to express solidarity with her parents. .
The mass that poured into the street today demanded punishment for those who raped and killed Nirmala 50 days ago in Kanchanpur district. .
People from all walks of life joined the citizen-led movement ‘Justice for Nirmala', marching from Maitighar to Baneshwor where they staged a sit-in. The protest was later joined by Nirmala's parents Yagya Raj and Durga Devi. .
Many protesters wore black while others displayed placards and chanted slogans demanding justice for 13-year-old Nirmala. .
Nirmala's parents have demanded fair, impartial and comprehensive investigation into the incident and punishment for the culprit(s). .
The Panta couple greeted the participants with joined hands and thanked them for their support. There was heavy presence of security personnel around the protest site, but no untoward incident occurred. .
Nirmala's father Yagya Raj also chanted slogans. ‘Provide justice to Nirmala' and ‘make public the culprits.' Nirmala's mother Durga Devi said the overwhelming public support had boosted confidence that she would get justice. .
Nirmala Panta, resident of Bhimdatta Municipality in Kanchanpur, was raped and murdered on July 26, and her body was found in a sugarcane field the next day. Locals were not satisfied with the police investigation and had demonstrated for days. They started their protest from the day Nirmala's body was found. .
Over the days, hundreds marched through the streets of Kanchanpur and many others protested on social media, sparking nationwide outrage over the nature of investigation. A 17-year-old boy lost his life and around 20 people were severely injured during protests that erupted following suspicious police investigation..
Nepal Police has recently collected blood samples of Superintendent of Police Dilli Raj Bista of Kanchanpur, who was suspended after mass protest over negligence during investigation..
Blood samples of his son Kiran Bista and Aayush Bista - nephew of Bhimdutta Municipality Mayor Surendra Bista - were also collected in connection with Nirmala's rape and murder..
Police, local government and the district administration drew severe criticism after Nirmala's parents disclosed that the authorities had ‘coerced' them to carry out her final rites the very next day after her body was found..
Nirmala's body was cremated on July 30. The clothes she was wearing were burnt according to her parents and supporters. Locals have alleged that police misused power to erase evidence at the crime scene.