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Police Arrest Nepal Media Group Chairman Kailash Sirohiya Over Citizenship Issue

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The chairman of one of the biggest media firms in Nepal was arrested, following a complaint about an inconsistency in his citizenship card, said police on Wednesday. Political leaders in the Himalayan nation criticized the arrest.

Head of the Kantipur media group, which runs a TV channel, radio station, and the widely read Nepali daily Kantipur, Kailash Sirohiya was detained on Tuesday in his Kathmandu office following a complaint that was filed with the Dhanusa district police in southern Nepal earlier this month.

The arrest comes after a string of news articles about the cooperative fraud published by KMG’s sites. Rabi Lamichhane, the home minister and deputy prime minister, is charged with embezzling millions of rupees placed in many cooperatives throughout multiple towns.

In response to reports in the Kantipur newspaper that the deputy prime minister in charge of the home ministry, Rabi Lamichhane, had unlawfully collected significant sums of money from small enterprises when he was a television show host before entering politics, he declared that the arrest was an “act of vengeance”.

Sirohiya has been called to appear in court on Wednesday. He was placed under detention pending an investigation, according to the police. Since the issuing body generates the citizenship card number, Sirohiya claimed he was innocent.

“It appears that the home minister was acting in a way of vengeance,” said Nepali Congress spokesperson Prakash Sharan Mahat.

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