Reported by Pradeep Kaphle

November 5, 2007-Nepal
     The Maoists on Monday admitted that their cadres killed Bara-district journalist Birendra Sah.
     Unveiling the report of the high-level committee it had formed to probe into the case, the Maoists have also expressed commitment to give all possible support to the state to initiate legal action against the assailants.
      The report states that Sah was murdered by Maoist cadres Kundan Phaujdhar and Ram Iqbal Sahani under the orders of their area in-charge Lal Babu Chaudhary. Sah was shot in his temple and chest in an open area inside a jungle in between Juguwa village of Sapahi VDC and Sukhuwa village of Kakari VDC in Bara district.
      Sah’s body was buried in a ditch near the incident site, according to the report based on the statement recorded by Chaudhary.
      Sah was abducted from Pipara Bazaar of Bara district on October 4.
Ramdev Das, who was abducted along with Sah, was, however, freed on the condition that they would kill him if he disclosed Sah’s condition.
      On October 28, the Maoists had formed a three-member team led their Bhojpura sub-state committee in-charge, Hari Bhakta Kandel, to investigate into Sah’s abduction.
    The November 3 edition of Prateek daily, a local vernacular published from Birgunj, had reported that Sah was killed on the very day he was kidnapped, quoting four Maoist cadres involved in his abduction.
    Maoist cadre Kundan Phaujdar admitted that he had abducted Sah as per the party’s directive.
    Also In an interview given to a local Gadhi Mai FM, he revealed that Sah was handed over to Chaudhary following the abduction.
Phaujdar said he was taking shelter in Hyderabad in India.  He said that he was not aware of Sah’s where abouts after he was handed over to Chaudhary.
     The Maoists maintain that Phaujdar and Sahani were expelled from the party the abduction. 
     A parliamentary panel formed on October 16 to find Sah’s whereabouts, had held the Maoists responsible for Sah’s abduction.

    Pradeep Kaphle

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