Kathua rape-murder case: We have failed the eight-year-old girl as humans, says VK Singh

April 12:Minister of State for External Affairs General V K Singh on Thursday said the country has failed the eight-year-old girl, who was allegedly gangraped and killed in J&K's Kathua district. He, however, added that the girl will not be denied justice. Singh is the first person from the government to respond to the incident that sparked outrage and led to large-scale protests in the state.
The victim, a Bakherwal Muslim girl, went missing from her house in Rasana in Kathua on January 10. She was held captive under the influence of sedatives for days at a "devsthan" (prayer hall). Her body was later dumped in the forests nearby. It was found seven days after she went missing. On Wednesday, reported details of the 18-page chargesheet filed by the Crime Branch, which named eight people as accused.
J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Thursday said proper procedures were being followed and investigations were being fast tracked to ensure justice for the victim. "The Law will not be obstructed by the irresponsible actions & statements of a group of people. Proper procedures are being followed, investigations are on the fast track & justice will be delivered," she tweeted.
Congress leader Kapil Sibal took a dig at PM Modi over his fast saying he should rather speak up over violence against women in states where the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is in power. "No time for 'upavas' dear PM . Speak up : the very soul of womanhood violated at Kathua and Unnao. Was 'Beti Bachao' yet another slogan?" Sibal wrote on Twitter. Prime Minister Modia nd BJP leaders are observing a day-long fast to protest against the Parliament washout.
National Conference (NC), the main opposition party in the state, also demanded transfer of the case from Kathua to any other court for a free and fair trial in the backdrop of lawyers' protests. While appreciating the police's role, former chief minister Omar Abdullah sought action against the two BJP ministers without naming them. He tweeted, "Action by @JmuKmrPolice against the Kathua mob masquerading as lawyers let's not forget the mob were emboldened by the actions/words of two BJP ministers in @MehboobaMufti's cabinet. What about action against them?''
The rape and murder case also led to a communal rift in the area, especially Kathua, where an outfit called Hindu Ekta Manch was set up by politicians cutting across party lines. Local BJP leaders, including Forest Minister Lal Singh, alleged that police were carrying out the arrests under political pressure and demanded that the CBI take over the case. They had also called a bandh in Jammu to protest against the police action.
According to sources, the Crime Branch's investigations found that the girl's murder was allegedly part of a conspiracy to force the Bakherwals to move out of the area. Agencies
Source: Agencies



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