No obstructions by lawyers body, CBI probe be done

Valley Citizens Council holds signature campaign demands case trial in Kashmir

Denying all allegations that police or victim's lawyer Deepika Singh Rajawat was obstructed in any manner, the BCI report went a step further to state that the strike call was justified and backed the demand by local lawyers for CBI probe.

The apex court agreed to hear a plea of two of the accused in the case, Sanji Ram and Vishal Jangotra, seeking transfer of the probe to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) besides seeking to be impleaded as parties in the petition filed by the father of the victim for transfer of case from Jammu and Kashmir to Chandigarh.

"Apart from the fairness in procedure, the concept of speedy trial gets attracted", a bench of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said.

The court posted the matter for July 30.

He also told the bench that BCI panels report can not be relied upon since no crime branch officers, who were allegedly obstructed by the agitating lawyers at Kathua, were heard and argued that the case should not be sensationalised.

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"The requisite state machinery will be put into motion to ensure the conduct of a fair, expeditious and impartial trial in the matter so that justice is dispensed to the victim while the human rights of the victim's family as well as the accused are protected in accordance with the law", the affidavit said. Fair investigation, fair trial, appropriate legal guidance and representation of both the accused and the victim's family has to be there.Instead of getting into what the BCI report says and the lawyers say, let us not digress from the real issue. "We are not concerned with it", the bench said, adding, "first of all, let us take care of the victims case".

It said that during the hearing before the top court, the petitioner's counsel had reposed faith in the comprehensive probe carried out in the case by a special investigation team of the Crime Branch of Jammu and Kashmir Police. Lawyer PV DInesh said that BCI has gone overboard and the report appears to be a complete "whitewash".

Two of the accused have also alleged they were falsely implicated and sought court intervention to have a fresh CBI probe.

Conclusion of the report filed in a sealed cover was read out in the court after the CJI asked senior advocate Vikas Singh, who was appearing for one of the bar bodies, to read it out.

The case dates back to January when a minor girl belonging to the Sunni-Muslim nomadic Bakerwal Tribe was allegedly abducted, drugged, gang-raped, tortured and killed.

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