Extra-judicial reconciliation to settle various cases of wrongdoing, including rape, theft and beating has increased the risk of crime in Bajura. The tendency to settle cases of crime through the meeting of locals in the presence of police is said to be emboldening culprits, giving rise to criminal activities. Of late, incidents of beatings, theft and rape are reported to be soaring in the rural parts of Bajura. “People involved in such malpractices resolve such issues in the village through reconciliation,”
Dan Bahadur Rokaya, a local from Kanda VDC said, adding that these people reconcile at the police officers if they fail to do so in the village. Rokaya said this had emboldened wrongdoers. “After the culprits engage in illegal activity, they, along with party leaders knock the door of the police office and VDC,” Rokaya said. This has triggered the rise in malpractice. After criminal activities increased due to the tendency to settle cases through reconciliation outside the court, District Court Bajura launched the Court with People Campaign to spread awareness about justice and legal delivery system. “We have launched this programme to halt extra-judicial settlement of cases in the village,” said District Judge Rajendra Kumar Acharya. “The practice of settling cases through reconciliation has denied justice to the victims and emboldened culprits”, added Acharya.
Police, political parties and seniors of the village have played an unbecoming role by settling cases through reconciliation. Acharya said police could not settle cases other than security-related ones through reconciliation. Victims report to the police for immediate relief. However, various incidents including rape, beating, monetary transactions and verbal abuse end up outside the court and are concluded through reconciliation. Legal eagle Bhim KC said the victims hesitate to go to the court as it is expensive and the process is lengthy. Some people also visit the temple to settle their problems. Thus, the court should do much more to regain people’s trust, KC said. The number of cases registered at the district court is minimal. Only 26 cases have been registered at the court including those transferred from the last year.
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