Amar Bahadur Bam, a Nepali, is in Dubai death row. He was convicted and sentenced to death in 2003, along with three Indian nationals-Karansingh Mansingh, 30, Manoj Mudanna Kotian, 32, and Vimal Kumar Ram, 26, in the well publicized Sharad Shetty murder trial.
Shetty, an Indian businessman based in Dubai, was an aide of notorious gangster Dawood Ibrahim. Ibrahim became household name after organizing 1993 Mumbai bombings. Mr. Mansingh, Mr. Kotian and Mr. Ram are believed to be from Chotan Rajan-Ibrahim’s staunch rival’s gang.
According to Arab News (16 October, 2003),
Investigations by the prosecution proved that Vimal had helped Karansingh, Manoj and Amar arrive in Dubai by issuing them three visas. He was said to have armed them with 0.38 pistols and trained the three men on using the pistols in a shooting club until they excelled at marksmanship. Meanwhile, he also helped gain three memberships for Karansingh, Manoj and Amar in the Indian club, the venue of the murder. The victim was a member of the club and a frequent visitor.
Vimal was said to have helped the three suspects study Sharad’s movements and timings, before providing them with the hit-and-run plan.
However, Mr. Bam has pleaded his innocence time and again. He has said that he did not know about the murder or the plan to murder. He was recruited in India to work as a driver in Dubai and had no knowledge that his employers had criminal intentions.
When men from his village visited him in at the prison, Mr Bam accused the Dubai police of using torture to make him confess to the crime. He also complained that language barrier (he does not speak or understand English or Arabic) prevented him from understanding the case and charges against him.
Dubai prosecutors also summarily ignored written statements from Mr. Mansingh and Mr. Kotian that Amar Bahadur did not participate in the murder or in planning the murder; he drove the gateway car without knowing about the crime.
Mr Bam’s elderly father and wife pleaded for his safe return at a press meet last week in Kathmandu. Dhanisha Devi, Mr.Bam’s wife, had to mortgage her jewellery to pay for the trip.
According to Republica,
Dhanisha, along with her father-in-law Karna Bahadur Bam, met President Yadav and Prime Minister Bhattarai separately and asked both of them to save her husband´s life at any cost.
“Think of me as your own daughter or sister and save me from being widowed,” Dhanisha told Prime Minister Bhattarai. She made the same plea with President Yadav as well. Both the president and the PM assured her that they would do their best to save Amar.
After meeting the president and the prime minister, Amar´s 64 years old father Karna Bahadur, said, “I am very hopeful now.
Along with the political establishment, human rights community and number of non resident Nepali organizations have extended their support to Mr. Bam’s family. Citizen journalists are posting regular updates at Meroreport and a petition at Change.org has already gathered 366 signatures.
It is now time for the Nepal government to discuss this issue formally with Dubai authorities and ask them to re-examine Mr. Bam’s case.