Published By: The Himalayan Times
Date: Monday, March 24, 2014

Khrisna Pandit, a cabbie, handed over a bag, which was left in his taxi (BA 1 JA 4081) by three Polish nationals to Metropolitan Police Circle, Durbarmarg last Wednesday. In charge of the circle, DSP Raj Kumar Silwal contacted the three Polish tourists who were staying at Friend Home Hotel in Jyatha, Thamel, and gave them their bag that contained camera, medicines and other belongings, the same night. Kathmandu Police appreciated Pandit’s honesty. On March 16, a Dutch tourist forgot his bag containing his passport, credit cards, I-Phone, money and other belongings, in Thamel-based Purple Haze Bar. Based on the CCTV footage of the restaurant; Metropolitan Police Circle, Lainchaur, nabbed two persons, who had stolen his bag, four days later on March 20. Such incidents affecting tourists are common in this capital city. In most of the cases, the tourists lose their belongings forever. 

According to Tourist Police Unit, Bhrikutimandap more than 340 cases were of lost / missing property out of 625 complaints registered throughout the country so far this fiscal. In 2012-13 / 769 complaints of the total complaints registered from mid July to mid March of 2013 -14, cases of missing or lost property is followed by theft (209), fraud / cheating (27), robbery (12) and pick pocketing (12), among others. Lost or stolen passports, cards, money, and camera, mobile, I –phone and driving licences, among others, are frequent complaints registered at the office.

Australian nationals have registered the highest number of complaints which 71 followed by Chinese (61) Indian (61) Dutch (41) British (41) French (33) Israeli (31) Americans (31) Japanese (30) in eight months of the current year.

According to Inspector Chhiring Kippa Lama, chief of Tourist Police Unit, Bhrikutimandap, most of the complaints registered by the tourists are of items left in taxis. “ It becomes difficult when complainants con not report the registration numbers of such vehicles because they are printed in Nepali” she said “likewise, as a number of hotels, restaurants or department stores do not have CCTV cameras, in is difficult to recover the lost items.”
According to Lama, some of the complainants also come with fake stories of property loss so that they can claim compensation from insurance companies. “We do not register such complaints if we, in course of conversation, understand that they are making up a story,” she said, adding, “Complaints about loss of money are also not registered.”

The Tourist Police, working under the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Tourism Industry complaints to concerned Police officers for legal action. It also helps regular police investigate case related to tourists. The special unit of Nepal Police was established in 1979 as a Mobile Tourist Police in Kathmandu aiming to help and assist tourists and ensure their safety during their travel and stay in Nepal. Currently, 105 police personnel are serving the unit throughout the country.

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