Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Accused of Pranita Sunuwar murder case escapes jail

Lalitpur, Jan 23 - One of the main accused of the sensational Pranita Sunuwar murder case that took place some three and a half years ago in the capital, Prakash Gurung has fled from police custody.

Security sources have informed that on January 18, Gurung had gone to Balaju with police constable Ramji Kafle of the Nakhhu jail to buy some goods. "But he somehow managed to dodge Kafle and fled," a police official said ekantipur reports.

The official also informed that the police did not make the incident immediately public because "it would hinder the investigation."

Confirming the incident, Jailer Ram Prasad Bhattarai said, "The constable (Kafle) has been arrested and the hunt for Gurung is on."

Sunuwar, 26, was brutally killed on the night of June 30, 2002. Gurung was being kept in the jail soon after his arrest in connection with the murder.

According to jailer Bhattarai, Gurung was made the Bhai Naike (leader) of the inmates due to his "good conduct" in the jail. Bhattarai also informed that a Bhai Naike, if needed, could come in and go out of the jail under security presence. Saying that Gurung had also been allowed to run a shop inside the jail, Bhattarai said, "He took advantage of our trust."

"We are preparing to produce constable Kafle before the district court," Bhattarai said, "He will be investigated and punished if found guilty."

Pranita, the second wife of Ashok Sunuwar, was murdered at her residence at Dhobighat, Lalitpur. Two weeks after the murder, police had said that Ashok's first wife and film producer Phuljyoti had hired some people to kill Pranita. Phuljyoti has been kept in the women's jail at Dillibazaar since then.

Police had also arrested Manjur Tamang, 22, of Nuwakot Sunkhani-2, Diwakar Budhathoki, 30, of Sirutar, Bhaktapur, Prakash Thapa of Nuwakot, and Chitra Bahadur Magar, Rajesh and Suraj Rai alias Raj Bahadur of for their alleged involvement in the murder. Police had also arrested Prakash Thapa, Keshav Thapa and Krishna Kumar Thapa for "helping in murder."

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