Publicado: Mar, Junio 11, 2019
Global | Por Milagro Delgado

Kathua rape and murder case: Court convicts 6 of 7 accused

Kathua rape and murder case: Court convicts 6 of 7 accused

The plea of an eighth accused is pending before the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, challenging the decision of the trial court order that he was a juvenile when the crime was committed.

Three accomplices - Sub Inspector Anand Dutta, Head Constable Tilak Raj and special police officer Surender Verma - who were convicted for destruction of evidence have been handed over five years imprisonment, they said.

The Supreme Court had ordered that the case be shifted out of Jammu and Kashmir and be heard on a daily basis by the trial court in Pathankot.

According to the charge sheet, the girl was abducted while she was out grazing horses and taken to a village in Jammu, the Hindu-dominated part of the Muslim-majority state of Jammu and Kashmir, on 10 January a year ago.

The verdict in the Kathua minor's rape and murder case has been announced by a special Pathankot court on Monday, ending the wait for justice for a crime that had left an entire nation shocked and numbed for its depravity.

Earlier, the Crime Branch informed the Supreme Court that it would be submitting a supplementary charge sheet in the case.

Judge Tejwinder Singh found at least some of the six guilty of rape and murder, but it was not immediately known if all of them were.

The Kathua incident was one of a string of brutal rapes that prompted thousands of people to take to the streets across India in April 2018, in some of the largest mass demonstrations held in the country since the rape and murder of a female college student in Delhi in 2012.

Some Hindu lawyers, last year, had tried to stop police from entering the court to file charges against the eight accused. The three accused have also been sentenced to 25 years for charges of gangrape.

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The Crime Branch's charge sheet that detailed the findings alleged that the crime was committed to force the victim's Muslim nomadic tribe to flee an area dominated by Hindus.

The barbarity of the case came to the fore in a 16-page charge sheet presented by the crime branch - a special wing of the Jammu and Kashmir police - in April past year. Raj and Dutta, who allegedly took Rs 4 lakh from Ram and destroyed crucial evidence, were also arrested.

Singh said prosecutors plan to appeal to a higher court and seek the death penalty for the three defendants who received life sentences.

Two others charged in the case were policemen accused of taking bribes to stifle the case.

Another one of Sanji Ram's juvenile nephews was not included in this trial.

The chargesheet said the girl had gone missing while grazing horses.

"This is a victory of constitutional spirit", the lawyer representing the child's family told BBC Punjabi. Her body wasn't found for a week.

Police say the attack had been planned to terrify the Bakarwals, a Muslim community of nomadic herders, into leaving the area.

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