Fake Bhutanese Refugee Scam

High Court grants bail to Tek Nath Rizal, bench divided over former Home Minister Khand’s release

KATHMANDU: The Patan High Court on Friday granted bail to several individuals, including exiled pro-democracy Bhutanese leader Tek Nath Rizal, CPN-UML leader Top Bahadur Rayamajhi’s son Sandeep Rayamajhi, Home Minister Bal Krishna Khand’s personal secretary Narendra KC, and president of Nepal Hajj Committee Shamsher Miya in connection to the fake Bhutanese refugees scam.

A joint bench, comprising judges Janak Pandey and Prakash Kharel, addressed multiple petitions filed by 20 defendants against the decision of the Kathmandu District Court, which had remanded them in judicial custody. The High Court ordered the release of Tek Nath Rizal on a bail of Rs 1.50 million, as confirmed by the court’s spokesperson, Tirtha Raj Bhattarai.

The bail amounts for the other individuals were set as follows: Sandeep Rayamajhi at Rs 3 million, and both Narendra KC and Shamsher Miya at Rs 1 million each.

However, the bench was divided over the release of former Home Minister Bal Krishna Khand. While Janak Pandey suggested bail at Rs 3 million, Prakash Kharel argued for continued custody. Another bench is expected to decide on Bal Krishna Khand’s case.

Similarly, the bench has ordered that CPN-UML leader Top Bahadur Rayamajhi be kept in judicial custody along with former government secretary Tek Narayan Pandey, Sanu Bhandari and Keshav Dulal.

The bench also granted bail to Ram Sharan KC at Rs 1.50 million.  Likewise Laxmi Maharjan and Ashish Budhathoki were also released today.

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