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6th of December 2023

Rights activists seek withdrawal of time limit for rape complaints

Kathmandu. Rights activists have demanded the removal of statute of limitations for rape. They have sought a prompt amendment to the law regarding rape and the removal of limit for registering a case against the crime.

As they explained, the law regarding rape is weak and it needs to be revised to ensure the rights of minors, adolescents and women to live, to be free, and to feel safe.

A delegation of women rights activists and media workers today reached the National Women Commission to draw its attention to this matter. The visit was organised by the Sambriddhi Foundation Nepal.

On the occasion, Foundation chair Sangita Shrestha handed a memorandum of understanding to Commission member Krishna Kumari Poudel Khatiwada and said a woman sharing a horrifying story of an alleged rape on her by an organiser of a beauty pageant eight years ago made the entire human society shudder.

“The woman who gathered her courage to speak up the violence she faced years back with the hope of getting justice was more upset when she became aware of the one year limit for seeking a legal remedy for the crime,” she said.

The woman, the first runner-up of 2014 Miss Global International, accused event organiser Manoj Pandey of making her drink tainted lemonade and raping her after summoning her to a hotel in the name of a success party.

The woman accused him of taking her nude photos while she was drugged, blackmailing her and raping for the next six months. He is also alleged of forcing her to have a sexual intercourse with others, too. The woman took the help of social sites to share her stories and said she was just 16 at the time.

The rape survivors are supposed to go through traumatic and difficult life and it would take long time for them to return to their normal condition, Chairperson Shrestha questioned time limit for registering rape report and demanded it to be removed.

She emphasised an important role of the Commission in controlling rape cases and delivering justice to the victims.
Receiving the memorandum, Khatiwada said that the Commission had put pressure on the concerned authority to arrest those involved in the incident following its revelation. She pledged to initiate in punishing those involved in such incidents at maximum as per the laws. The Commission would work to remove time limit for registering rape report, she said.

Stating that the Commission was coordinating with the security agencies to ensure the perpetrators have not fled incidents following them coming to light, the Commission Chair Kamala Kumari Parajuli informed that senior counselors had been attending to the rape survivor.

It would organise talks with law experts in strengthening laws and taking initiatives to remove time limit for registering rape report, she said.