Sound probe done, further investigation on in Kathua gangrape & murder case: JK Govt

The Jammu and Kashmir Government Monday told the Supreme Court that a detailed charge sheet was filed after conducting a “sound” probe in the Kathua gangrape and murder case and further investigation was going on at a “rapid pace”.
The state government urged a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, which transferred the trial from Kathua to Pathankot in Punjab, that they should be permitted to appoint a special public prosecutor to conduct the trial, which was accepted.
The state said it would continue to provide proper security to the victim’s family, their lawyers and the accused as well.
Senior advocate Gopal Subramanium, appearing for the state, said the investigation was conducted by the crime branch of Jammu and Kashmir Police in a “record time” and being the state, they know that they have to be responsible and conduct a fair probe and ensure fair trial in the case.
Referring to a report given by the District and Sessions Judge of Kathua district court to the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, he said it showed that attempts were made to interfere in the process of filing of charge sheet by the police at the court there.
Subramanium, who was assisted by state’s advocate general Jahangir Iqbal Ganai and standing counsel Shoeb Alam, said the case has been committed to the court of district and session judge after filing of the charge sheet before the magistrate, but they were opposing the transfer of case outside the state.
“We would like a fair trial to take place. Further investigation is going on at a rapid pace,” he said, adding that since the time the apex court had taken cognisance of the matter, everybody has taken a position that they do not want any interference in the administration of justice.
“We undertake to give protection to all the counsel in the case. The investigation conducted was sound one and it was done in record time,” he said and suggested that the trial could be transferred to Jammu, Sambha, Udhampur or Ramban.
Later, Ganai said the trial could be transferred to adjoining districts like Poonch, Rajouri and Doda.
However, after much deliberations, the parties agreed to the transfer of the trial to Pathankot in Punjab and the court ordered accordingly.
Subramanium said that arrangements to be made by the state would be done and they would ensure transportation of the accused, advocates and victim’s family members and other necessary facilities, including food.
“The State of Jammu and Kashmir shall provide requisite number of interpreters as directed by the District and Sessions Judge, Pathankot, so that the deposition of the witnesses can be properly recorded and translated copies thereof can be provided to the accused persons,” the bench said.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today said the Supreme Court decision to shift the trial of the Kathua gangrape and murder case to Pathankot would boost the morale of the state police, which had left “no stone unturned” to ensure that the eight-year-old’s family gets justice.
“I welcome today’s decision by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the Kathua case. This will go a long way to boost the morale of our @JmuKmrPolice force who in the face of great adversity have left no stone unturned to ensure that the deceased’s family gets justice,” Mehbooba said in a tweet.