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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Kamduni residents move SC against trial shift to Kolkata

Family members of the victim suspected foul play behind shifting of the trial and said it will also be time-consuming.

Written by Express News Service | Kolkata | Published: August 14, 2013 2:58:14 am

Residents of Kamduni moved the Supreme Court today against a Calcutta High Court order to shift the trial of the Kamduni rape and murder case from Barasat court to the city sessions court. Family members of the victim suspected foul play behind shifting of the trial and said it will also be time-consuming.

“Barasat court is closer home. It is not that the case will be solved in a day. We will have to visit court several times and if we have to go to Kolkata everytime,many of us who have normal jobs,would not be able to do so. We want the case to be tried here at Barasat court,” said the victim’s brother,adding that even if the government provided conveyance,it would still be inconvenient.

He also said that the family was skeptical about the sudden shifting. “No one is saying anything. We cannot rely on anybody,including politicians. The agriculture minister called us on August 4 and assured us that a meeting with the chief minister would be fixed in two or three days. But nothing has happened so far.”

Tumpa Kayal, who alongwith neighbour Mausumi Kayal led a movement demanding justice for the victim,said if she was to testify,she would rather go to Barasat court which is not far from her in-laws’ place. “I don’t know how my in-laws would take it. Going to the sessions court would be very inconvenient,” she said.

Mausumi said even though the court has directed the state to provide a vehicle to ferry witnesses to and from the court,“The transit time would be at least three times more than what it takes to go to Barasat court.”

Others like headmaster Pradeep Mukherjee,who also participated in the protest movement,suspected conspiracy behind shifting of the trial. “I don’t know how the public prosecutor relented to the proposal. There are 54 witnesses,most of whom are housewives. About 5-6 hours would be wasted in travelling and chances are that many would lose interest. We think it is a ploy to protect the accused,” Mukherjee said. He also raised the security aspect involved in the change. “There is a growing sense of apprehension among people about travelling the distance to testify,” he added.

He said there was cause for concern also because the state,in an earlier instance,had said that the case was progressing well at the Barasat court.

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