The Supreme Court is expected to hear the petition filed by two accused in the Kathua rape-and-murder case seeking transfer of probe to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday. While several voices have joined the chorus for a CBI investigation into the case, others have spoken against it. This includes Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti who asserted that there was "absolutely no need for a CBI inquiry" into the incident.
Here is a look at some of the reactions to the demand for a CBI investigation.
Absolutely no need for CBI inquiry, says Mehbooba Mufti
According to The Indian Express, the Jammu and Kashmir chief minister firmly rejected the call for a CBI probe into the Kathua case and said that “if you don’t trust Jammu and Kashmir Police, there is no one left to be trusted in the state”.
The chief minister expressed confidence in the investigation carried out by the Jammu and Kashmir Police and stated that "there is absolutely no need for a CBI inquiry".
"I am very clear about this case. The Jammu and Kashmir Police’s Crime Branch has done a very good investigation, collected all the evidence scientifically. Now the trial will be in the court, which will decide the outcome. We are convinced that there is absolutely no need for a CBI inquiry. We cannot take such a decision because the accused are demanding it,’’ Mufti was quoted as saying in the report.
Mufti further alleged that “those who question the Crime Branch investigation have a vested interest and their aim is to protect the perpetrators of this heinous crime”.
Nothing wrong in demand for CBI probe: Kavinder Gupta
The new Jammu and Kashmir deputy chief minister Kavinder Gupta, however, appeared to contradict the chief minister, saying that there was nothing wrong in the demand for a CBI probe into the case.
“It’s good if people are demanding a CBI inquiry into Kathua rape-and-murder incident. They should demand a CBI inquiry. The matter is in the Supreme Court,” Gupta was quoted as saying by Greater Kashmir.
Centre has no objection to CBI probe: Jitendra Singh
Union minister Jitendra Singh had asserted that the Centre had no objection to the handing over of the Kathua rape-and-murder case to the CBI, provided the state government comes out with a reference.
“As far as we are concerned, we don't have any problem or objection to hand over the case to the CBI. If the state government comes out with a reference, we will hand over the case to the agency today itself," Singh had said to reporters on the sidelines of a function in Jammu.
Jammu and Kashmir Police targeted innocent individuals: Ashok Kaul
Claiming that the Jammu and Kashmir Police targeted several innocent individuals in the Kathua case, Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Jammu and Kashmir state general secretary Ashok Kaul had asserted that the BJP would continue to press for a CBI probe into the incident, The Economic Times had reported.
"We still demand that the case should be handed over to the CBI. The crime branch is harassing and has targeted many innocents. If some police officials are involved in the crime, does it not raise a finger at the whole institution? The SP of the district should have resigned by now," the report had quoted Kaul as saying.
Unthinkable that father-son duo can plan rape: Hindu Ekta Manch
The Hindu Ekta Manch has strongly demanded a CBI investigation into the Kathua case, saying that it was unthinkable that a father-son duo could plot a rape and murder together and eight people could rape an eight-year-old, The Economic Times had reported.
The family members of the accused along with the Hindu Ekta Manch members had protested in Kathua, demanding a CBI probe.
Do not support accused but want fair probe: Jammu Bar Association
The Jammu Bar Association had sought a CBI probe into the Kathua rape and murder case while asserting that it did not support the accused but wanted a fair probe.
BS Slathia, president of the bar association, had also said that attempts were being made to project the lawyers as the supporters of the accused. "Lawyers of Jammu are being maligned in order to divide the state along communal lines. All we have been saying is that the investigation of the case should be transferred to the CBI. Does anyone say that the CBI is communal," Slathia had asked.
Demand for CBI probe appears to be justified: Bar Council of India committee
A Bar Council of India (BCI) committee, headed by former high court judge Justice Tarun Agarwal, had supported the demand of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association, Jammu, and Kathua District Bar Association seeking a CBI probe, in the Supreme Court, saying that the demand "appears to be justified".
Group of Intellectuals and Academicians demand CBI probe
The demand for a CBI investigation also came from a group of five women comprising retired judge Meera Khadakkar, Supreme Court advocate Monika Arora, Delhi University professor Sonali Chaitalkar, social activist Monicca Agarwaal and journalist Sarjana Sharma, who submitted a "factual" report on the brutal rape and murder of the eight-year-old girl in Kathua to Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh.
The report claimed that the chargesheet filed by the Jammu and Kashmir crime branch in the case had discrepancies and the investigation was "botched-up".
The women, who call themselves a Group of Intellectuals and Academicians (GIA), said they had met more than 25 people, including the victim's family, the family members of the accused, and some influential people from the nomadic community to which the girl belonged. During their stay in Jammu and Kashmir, they had also called on Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.
With inputs from agencies
Updated Date: May 07, 2018 13:11 PM