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Kathua rape: Of 6 convicts, 3 cops booked for destroying evidence

ANI | June 10, 2019 02:13 PM
Victim's advocate Mubeen Farooqui speaking to media in Pathankot on Monday Photo/ANI

Pathankot (Punjab)[India], Jun 10 (ANI): Three police officers have been convicted for destruction of evidence in the Kathua rape and murder case, said advocate representing the victim in the case.

"Police officials Tilak Raj, Anand Dutta and Surender Verma were convicted under section 201 of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) for causing destruction of evidence," said Mubeen Farooqui, victim's advocate told reporters outside the court on Monday.

The main accused in the case Sanji Ram was booked under section 302 (murder), 376D (gang rape), 363 (kidnapping), 120b (criminal conspiracy), 343 (wrongful confinement) of the RPC.

The Pathankot District and Sessions Court convicted six out of the total seven accused in the case relating to the gruesome rape and murder of the minor that shocked the country in January 2018.

District and Sessions Judge Tejwinder Singh convicted village head Sanji Ram, his friend Parvesh Kumar, two Special Police Officers Deepak Khajuria and Surender Verma, Head Constable Tilak Raj, Sub Inspector Anand Dutta, while Vishal, the son of Sanjhi Ram, got acquitted.

The eight-year-old girl, belonging to a nomadic Muslim tribe, was abducted, drugged, gang-raped, tortured and killed on January 10 last year.

According to the charge sheet, the girl was allegedly raped in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district after having been kept sedated for four days before she was bludgeoned to death. Sanji Ram, considered the main accused, allegedly conspired with other accused persons to kidnap the girl as a strategy to remove the nomadic community from the area.

During the in-camera trial, which was conducted on the basis of the Supreme Court guidelines, a total of 114 witnesses were presented by the prosecution and were further cross-examined by the defense. Following the conclusion of the trial on June 3, Justice Singh reserved his order in the case for today.

The Crime Branch had arrested village head Sanji Ram, his son Vishal, juvenile nephew and his friend Anand Dutta, and two special police officers Deepak Khajuria and Surender Verma.

Head Constable Tilak Raj and Sub-Inspector Anand Dutta, who allegedly took Rs 4 lakh from Sanji Ram and destroyed crucial evidence, were also arrested by the Crime Branch. (ANI)

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