The father of the eight-year-old girl who was gangraped and murdered in Kathua has moved the Supreme Court on Monday seeking transfer of the sensitive case from Jammu to Chandigarh. The court will hear the plea at 2pm today. The court will also hear a plea filed by Kathua-based lawyer Deepika Singh Rajawat, who is representing the victim’s family. In her plea, Rajawat claimed she is facing threat to her life for pursuing the case.
“Today, I don’t know, I am not in my senses. I can be raped, I can be killed and may be they won’t allow me to practice in court. They (have) isolated me, I don’t know how I can survive,” the advocate told news agency ANI. She also alleged that she has been labelled as an ‘anti-Hindu’ and is facing social boycott. “I will tell this to the Supreme Court. I am feeling bad and it’s really unfortunate. You can well imagine my plight. But, I will stand for justice and we would seek justice for the eight-year-old girl,” she said.
A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud considered the submission advanced by senior advocate Indira Jaising, representing Rajawat and Kapur, for urgent hearing of the two petitions today itself.
“We have already passed the order on Friday,” the bench said.
Jaising responded by saying that the earlier notice was issued to the bar associations but the issue at present relates to the threat faced by local counsel Rajawat. The bench then agreed to hear the petitions at 2 PM today itself.
Meanwhile, a district sessions court in Kathua began hearing in the rape and murder case today. The eight accused who have appeared before the judicial magistrate pleaded not guilty. Their counsel said they were ready to undergo narco analysis test to prove their innocence. The Juvenile arrested in the case, however, has moved for bail. It will be heard later today.
In January, the child from a minority nomadic community was allegedly held in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district for a week during which she was kept sedated and sexually assaulted before being bludgeoned to death.
According to the chargesheets filed by the crime branch, the abduction, rape and killing of the girl was part of a carefully planned strategy to remove the minority nomadic community from the area. The caretaker of the ‘Devisthan’, a small temple, is listed as the main conspirator behind the crime.
with PTI inputs