Kuwait, Jan 3: A Nepali woman domestic help has been slapped death penalty in Kuwait on the charge of murdering a local woman, according to rights activist working for women's welfare. In a programme on Nepali migrant labourers organised in the capital Wednesday the right activists also called upon the government to ask the Kuwait government to grant an amnesty to the accused woman.
According to representatives of Maiti Nepal, United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) including various NGOs, Dolma Sherpa of Sindupalchowk was handed down the death penalty by the Kuwaiti court. A mother of a three year old son, Sherpa's husband is reported to have been working in Iraq.
"After Kuwait-based rights activist Raju Nagpal informed us through email about the court verdict this week we sent letters informing about Sherpa's plight to Embassy of Saudi Arabia, the labour department and the concerned ministry," said Bijaya Rai Shrestha of Paurakhi, an NGO working for women, "We are awaiting its reply."
Sherpa has been languishing in the central jail in Kuwait for the last five months for allegedly murdering a wife of her employer.
"Charging that hair strands found on the hand of the deceased woman were that of Sherpa, the police had filed a case against her. Based on this evidence the court slapped the death penalty after investigating Sherpa's finger prints," Shrestha said, adding that she still doesn't have any idea what kind of court handed down the sentence or whether there was a provision for appeal against the court's verdict.
Claiming that Dolma was innocent since her blood test report did not establish proof, Nagpal in an email he wrote to Shrestha has said, "She is crying, thinking the fate of her child back home and pleading for her life."
It must be mentioned here that the government had imposed a ban in 1998 against Nepali women working in the gulf after Kami Sherpa, a Nepali women domestic help, killed herself while fleeing a rape attempt in Saudi Arabia.
Meanwhile, three Nepali women are languishing in the central jail of Saudi Arabia from the past few months.
Those who are serving time in the Riyadh located jail are Kavita Karki of Jhapa, Hira Thapa of Kaski and Bimala Timalsina of Chitwan. It was not immediately clear on what charges they were put in jail.
Despite the government ban, an estimated 10,000 Nepali women work in Saudi Arabia mostly as domestic help.