Shopian case: J-K to seek HC nod for CBI probe
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Following reports that samples taken from the Shopian rape and murder victims had been tampered with, the J-K government on Wednesday decided to hand over the controversial case to the CBI after seeking permission from the High Court.
"The government has decided that it will refer the case to the CBI," Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather said in the Assembly after the opposition PDP raised the issue. "We will bring this to the notice of the High Court in the next hearing. We will have to follow the High Court's directions then," the minister added.
Meanwhile, attesting that fact that the vaginal swabs sent for DNA analysis to the Central Forensic Laboratory do not match with those of Aasiya and Neelofer, the High Court said it would constitute a more empowered Special Investigation Team to probe the case if it was not satisfied with the work of the present SIT. This SIT, the court observed, would be on the pattern of the one formed by the Supreme Court to investigate the Godhra riots.
"It is no longer a case of either Bar or Shakeel (husband of one of the murdered women). It is now the case of the people of Kashmir. We will pursue this case," said Chief Justice Barin Ghosh after Advocate General Ishaq Qadiri presented the status report of the SIT and a sealed envelope containing the CFSL report.
"We seek suggestions form the Bar and the Advocate General in their individual capacities, not as parties to this case, to give a proper direction to the investigations," he said, also seeking suggestions of the Shopian Majlis Mashawarat which has been leading a campaign for justice.
When Bar president Mian Qayoom expressed fears that the case may go the same way as the sex scandal, the Chief Justice said: "We will not permit this. It is better, you talk to Shakeel and the Shopian Majlis and come up with suggestions to give the case a proper direction," Chief Justice Ghosh said.
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