Kathua rape: After shifting case, accused moved out of J&K
The SC today passed a slew of directions to authorities in the Kathua rape-murder case, including shifting the accused from Kathua prison in J&K to Gurdaspur district jail in Punjab. J&K has to ensure their families meet them at Gurdaspur, by providing financial support. If litigants feel aggrieved by the trial court's proceedings, they can move the Punjab and Haryana HC, the SC ruled.
The case that shook the nation
The gangrape of an eight-year-old in Kathua had gained attention for its brutality, but also because of its political ramifications. The victim, a Muslim Bakarwal, was allegedly raped by a group of Hindu men for days before she was murdered. The accused have pleaded not guilty and claimed they are being framed. Controversial protest rallies were also organized in their support.
Two months ago, the case was shifted out of J&K
Meanwhile, the victim's lawyer, Deepika Singh Rajawat, claimed the J&K HC Bar Association had warned her against representing the family and threatened they will stop her. Taking cognizance, the SC ordered the case will be heard in Pathankot, and day-to-day hearings will be held. The main accused, Sanji Ram, had demanded a CBI probe, alleging tainted officers, but the SC refused this request.
Police have eight weeks to file supplementary chargesheet
The trial began on May 31. Last month, the Pathankot district and sessions court framed charges against seven of the eight accused in the case. The eighth accused in the case is a juvenile. Today, a bench headed by CJI Dipak Misra ordered J&K Police to file a supplementary chargesheet in the case in eight weeks. It also refused to ban campaigns supporting the accused.