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Sadhus throng Pashupatinath Temple for Maha Shivaratri

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KATHMANDU — As the country is preparing to celebrate the Mahashivaratri festival, one of the biggest Hindu festivals dedicated to the Lord Shiva on Tuesday, the movement of devotees and sadhus has started growing dense at the Pashupatinath Temple area.

The festival falls on Tuesday this year.

Liker in the past years, hundreds of sadhus from across the country and from various parts of neighbouring India have arrived at the temple and taking refuge at the temple premises as well as Bankali area.

Around five thousand Sadhus from Nepal and India are expected to show up at Pashupat area in Kathmamdu this week to take part in the festivities of Maha Shivaratri, according to the Pashupati Area Development Trust, the government body responsible for looking after the Pashupatinath area.

One can view the scenes of sadhus with their faces smeared with firewood ashes and puffing on cigarettes mixed with marijuana. On the other hand, people are seen dancing and singing in the honour of Lord Shiva.

There is a trend of bidding farewell to sadhus after handing them offerings and money following the conclusion of the festival.

Meanwhile, arrangements have been made for pilgrims and sadhus for their accommodation, food and water, said the Trust.

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Nirmala Panta rape, murder case : Locals protest after wrong suspect paraded

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BHIMDUTTANAGAR — Locals who were protesting against the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta of Kanchanpur’s Bhimdatta Municipality, have enforced shutdown in Bhimduttanagar Bazaar on Tuesday, protesting police’s failure to reveal facts behind the murder of 13-year-old girl and parading wrong suspect on Monday.

The District Police Office, organising a press conference on Monday,had made public Dilip Singh Bista (41), of Baghphanta, Bhimdatta Municipality-19 as Nirmala’s murderer.

Locals have shut down the market area stating that police were not being able to make public the true murderer(s) as they are not convinced by the findings of police citing that Bista was mentally unsound, according to the District Police Office.

Transportation has also been halted.

Bista, a resident of Khanna Chauraha area in Bhimdutta Municipality-19, was apprehended near the scene of crime on Sunday, according to police.

Police making public the wrong suspect has infuriated the locals and fueled the protest.

The agitators including various civil society organisations and human rights defenders have been picketing the District Administration Office and staging rally on the street mounting pressure on the police to reveal the facts behind the heinous crime.

Meanwhile, it had been learnt that police have fired rounds of teargas shells to contain the agitated mob.

Nirmala was found murdered in a sugarcane field on July 27, a day after she had gone to her friend’s home to get a notebook.

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