Mahara-Roshani, rape allegation and the investigative challenges

News Analysis Reporters Club: The Nepal police are investigating the rape allegation of Ms. Roshani Shahi to former Speaker of the Parliament and Senior leader of the Nepal Communist Party Krishna Bahadur Mahara. The police are looking into the call details as well as the location during the incident.

The Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa has directly ordered the Inspector General of Police Sarbendra Khanal to look into the matter in order for the investigation not to be influenced as well as fair. Police are now probing further into the residence of Roshani Shahi located in Tinkune in the capital and collecting necessary evidence. They are also looking into the details of the prior relationship between Mahara and Shahi.

(Former Speaker of the Parliament and Senior leader of the Nepal Communist Party Krishna Bahadur Mahara)

Although the police have begun their investigation into the matter after it came to light through an online news portal HamraKura, no FIR or official complaint with the police has been registered yet. Roshani Shahi had called on the police hotline number on Sunday evening and had informed the police regarding the incident through the emergency hotline, and the police had reached her residence shortly thereafter. Instead of filing an official complaint Ms. Shahi first approached the media.

She then went on to contradict her statements made to another online news portal. This incident now has a mix of anger, emotion and seems to be heavily influenced due to its sensitivity. The police now have no option but to look deeper into the matter. Ms. Shahi also claims to be a patient suffering from depression and is under medications. She has repeatedly changed her statements making the case obscure.

This case can go to the point of being shut down from the public, along with having political implications and pressure. This should not be a disadvantage for the police to independently investigate the matter and bring the truth out to the public. The victims have always been influenced or pressurized in cases such as these.

In several cases women too have been found to provide false allegations. The police now have a sensitive and extremely high profile case in their hands. Both Krishna Bahadur Mahara and Roshani Shahi will be called in for questioning regarding the case. Roshani may also be arrested for unalike statements to the media.

The entire investigation will be based on the entirety of her statements, and any evidence for the matter as against former Speaker of the House Krishna Bahadur Mahara. It is still unclear why statements where changed and questionable would be the mental health condition of Ms. Shahi working as a government employee.