Top Cop in Nepal killed

by Nepal News Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2003 at 2:34 PM

Shrestha is the first top-ranking official to have been targeted by the rebels and was the first Inspector General of Police (IGP) of the 15,000-member APF raised about one-and-half-year ago to combat insurgents.

Kathmandu, Monday January 27, 2003 Magh 13, 2059.

Armed police chief shot dead Security agencies in valley on high alert

By Kiran Chapagain

KATHMANDU, Jan 26:Armed Police Force (APF) chief Krishna Mohan Shrestha along with his wife Nudup Shrestha and bodyguard Surya Regmi were killed by suspected Maoists early today morning.

All three died on the spot. While Shrestha bore multiple bullet marks in his temple and face, his wife succumbed to injuries as bullets pierced her chest. Nudup was a teacher in Lincoln School.

The incident took place at about 7:35 am while they were on their routine morning walk along Ring Road at Bhanimandal, Lalitpur. The bodies were taken to the Birendra Police Hospital where Prime Minister Lokendra Bahadur Chand, his cabinet colleagues, leaders from various political parties including former prime ministers Girija Prasad Koirala and Sher Bahadur Deuba, government officials and several private citizens paid homage to the victims of what they term as terrorism.

The bodies of the Shrestha couple were later taken to their residence where it will be lying in state for a day. The funeral will take place tomorrow at the Pashupati Aryaghat, following the arrival of their two daughters - one from India and the other from New Zealand.

The police has arrested a person named Krishna Hari Sainju, son of Ram Gopal Sainju of Bhaktapur Durbar Square, who is believed to be one of the three attackers. Sainju was arrested with bullet injuries on his leg from the scene of the crime, shortly after incident. However, two other assailants including a woman, all dressed in black, managed to flee from the scene.

Shrestha was the first Inspector General of Police (IGP) of the 15,000-member APF raised about one-and-half-year ago to combat insurgents.

Mild mannered and soft-spoken, Shrestha was a popular figure in the force, commanding respect and admiration in other spheres as well. Assistant Minister for Women, Children and Social Welfare, Anuradha Koirala, who rushed to the spot and later to the hospital, bitterly cried, recalling how Shrestha went out of the way to help those in distress and need.

Shrestha is the first top-ranking official from the force to have been targeted by the rebels. Earlier, Senior Superintendent of Police, Parmeshowre Singh Sijapati, died in a Maoist-laid ambush in Dang, nearly one-and-a-half-year ago.

Within minutes of the murders, a huge crowd of nearby residents and passers-by gathered at the spot. Splotches of blood were splattered all over the road.

Though no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, the government has blamed the Maoist rebels for the killings. Prime Minister Lokendra Bahadur Chand summoned an emergency cabinet meeting hours after the murders. Another impromptu meeting of security agency chiefs, chaired by Gen Pyar Jung Thapa, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS), also took place immediately after the incident. An emergency meeting of the Security Council was also summoned later