Lalitpur school teacher arrested on charge of raping minor student

A teacher of a government school in Lalitpur has been arrested on the charge of raping a 15-year-old girl. Ravi Kepchhaki, a teacher who had family ties with the survivor, was arrested by the Lalitpur police on March 10 on the charge of raping a secondary school student.

According to Lalitpur police, medical reports showed that the teenager was pregnant as a result of the rape. However, since Kepchhaki has denied rape allegations, police are preparing to conduct a DNA test.

The teen girl, who was staying with her daily wage earning parents in India, had returned to Nepal three years ago and was living with her relatives.

Though the teenager had initially told the police that she was sexually assaulted by one of her relatives, she is said to have changed her statement after Kepchhaki’s arrest. Lalitpur Police Chief SSP Kiran Bajracharya said they were unable to register the rape case earlier as the survivor had changed her statement.

When questioned about the rape allegations, Kepchhaki is said to have misbehaved with the police. Though no formal complaint of rape had been filed against Kepchhaki till then, police rounded him up on the charge of indecent behavior suspecting that he could flee.

The initial period of Kepachhaki’s detention for investigation of indecent behavior ends today.

Meanwhile, the organization providing shelter to the survivor lodged a police complaint against Kepchhaki on Sunday and charged him of rape.

After the complaint, Lalitpur police is seeking permission from the District Court to continue Kepchhaki’s detention and proceed with further investigation.

The teenager’s classmates had expressed concerns with other teachers of the school after she said that her menstruation had stopped for the past two months. That was when Kepchhaki fell under the suspicion radar.

According to SSP Bajracharya, the survivor had been fearful, anxious, incoherent, requested to stop the investigation, and threatened to commit suicide during investigation.

As the survivor is a minor, the perpetrator could face up to 10 to 12 years in prison if convicted. As per legal provisions, jail time can go up by three more years if it is confirmed that the girl was raped by her protector.

Meanwhile in Syangja, police on Sunday arrested a 33-year-old man on the charge of raping a 13-year-old girl.

According to the survivor’s complaint lodged with the police, Bhel Bahadur Thapa had raping her. The incident came to light only after the girl found out that she was pregnant following the assault.

Syangja Police Chief SP Hobindra Bogati informed that Thapa was remanded to custody for five days by the district court.