Kathua rape case: Provide security to victim’s kin, lawyers, SC to J&K govt

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday directed the Jammu and Kashmir government to provide security to the victim’s family and lawyers Deepika Rajawat and Talib Hussain. The apex court also sought State’s reply on the plea for transferring in Kathua gangrape case trial to Chandigarh.

The top court asked the Jammu and Kashmir police to be more vigil regarding the security at the observation home where one of the accused who is a juvenile is kept in connection with raping and killing an eight-year-old girl and fixed plea on April 27.

Opposing the plea for a CBI probe, which has been sought by many of the help organisations and supporters, the victim’s father expressed complete satisfaction and trust over the probe conducted by the Jammu and Kashmir police.

The trial into the Kathua rape and murder case began today in Kathua. During the hearing, the eight accused pleaded not guilty and asked the judge for a narco analysis test. Seven of the eight accused were produced before District and Sessions Judge Sanjay Gupta, who asked the state Crime Branch to give them copies of the chargesheet and fixed April 28 as the next date of hearing.

The Kathua rape and murder case has hurt the national conscience. A child from a minority nomadic community was allegedly held in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district. Captive for a week, the little child was kept sedated and sexually assaulted before being bludgeoned to death.

The Crime Branch revealed in its chargesheets that the abduction, rape and killing of the girl was part of a carefully planned strategy to remove the nomadic community from the area. A separate chargesheet was filed for the juvenile.

Following the brief hearing in the Sessions court, all the seven accused were shifted back to the jail under heavy security.