Protect Kathua case victim's kin, lawyer: SC tells J&K Govt

Protect Kathua case victim's kin, lawyer: SC tells J&K Govt

The Supreme Court on Monday ordered adequate security for the Kathua rape victim's family, their lawyer Deepika Singh Rajawat and others and sought the Jammu and Kashmir government's response to a plea for the transfer of the trial of the case to Chandigarh.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud was also critical of the Jammu High Court Bar Association, which had passed a resolution not to attend the courts saying "it is the duty of the bar association as a collective body and they can not obstruct the process of law".

It also appeals for the strengthening of the security cover at the juvenile home that houses the minor accused and to prevent unauthorised individuals from meeting them.

"Be that as it may, we do not intend to enter into this sphere (transfer of case to CBI) at this stage", the bench said, noting the submission of the victim's father.

The court directed the prosecution to supply copies of challan with all the documents annexed with it to the accused in Kathua district jail by 4 pm on Tuesday. "We are not seeking transfer of investigation".

The eighth accused is a juvenile, who has moved a bail application before the Chief Judicial Magistrate.

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The crime, according to charge sheet was planned by a former revenue officer, Ram, who wanted to drive out her nomadic community of Bakarwals out of the Rassana area of Kathua. Rajawat said, "The Supreme Court has issued directions to the authorities to provide protection to us (victim family and their counsel)".

Senior lawyer Indira Jaising, appearing for the victim's father, told a Bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra that the state police had done a good job in carrying out a scientific investigation and arresting all the eight accused.

The chargesheet said Sanjhi Ram, the caretaker of the temple was the main conspirator.

The two accused - former revenue official Sanjhi Ram and special police officer Deepak Khajuria - told presspersons outside the Kathua court that they were willing to go for narco-analysis tests. Her body was found in the same area a week later. Among the remaining accused, Sub Inspector Dutta has not engaged any counsel, while Head Constable Tilak Raj is being represented by advocates A K Sawhney and Aseem Sawhney.

It said that it will only hear the persons related to the case.

IGP Mujtaba said the FSL lab wrote to the Crime Branch that the dress which was sent to them by the police had no mud on it and looked like it has been "dry-cleaned" a few days ago. In Unnao in Lucknow, A 17-year-old girl alleged that she was raped by a BJP MLA.

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