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Lalita Niwas Land Case: 12 Found Guilty, Former Ministers Acquitted

February 15, 2024
Lalita Niwas Land Case

KATHMANDU, NEPAL – The Special Court has delivered its verdict in the high-profile Lalita Niwas land misappropriation case. Twelve individuals, including Shobhakant Dhakal and Ramkumar Subedi, have been found guilty. However, three former ministers, including former Deputy Prime Minister Bijay Kumar Gachchadhar, were acquitted of all charges.

The verdict, announced by a bench led by Special Court Chair Tek Narayan Kunwar, follows extensive hearings involving 175 defendants. These included prominent figures such as Bhatbhateni Supermarket owner Min Bahadur Gurung and former ministers Chandra Dev Joshi and Dambar Shrestha.

The case revolves around the alleged illegal transfer of over 136 ropani of government land at the Lalita Niwas complex in Baluwatar. The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) initiated the case in February 2020.

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Ram Kumar Subedi, Sobhakanta Dhakal, and Min Bahadur Gurung are identified in the charge sheet as key figures in the corruption scheme.

While former Prime Ministers Madhav Kumar Nepal and Dr. Baburam Bhattarai were questioned, the CIAA did not pursue charges against them. A writ challenging this decision awaits a Supreme Court ruling.

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