Supreme Court to examine Kathua case

Supreme Court to examine Kathua case
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New Delhi, Apr 13: The Supreme Court (SC) said Friday it has decided to examine, of its own accord, the Kathua gangrape-murder case, and has also sent a notice to the Bar Council of Jammu and Kashmir for preventing the filing of a chargesheet against the rape accused.
The SC also took serious note of the Kathua District Bar Association and the High Court Bar Association at Jammu striking work and opposing the filing of the chargesheet in the rape case, and obstructing a lawyer from representing the victim’s family. It issued notices to these two associations as well.
An SC bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra sought answers from all the people it issued notices to by April 19 and said it is impermissible under law and ethics to prevent the filing of a chargesheet or oppose the representation of the victim’s family by a lawyer.
The SC bench said every party before any court is entitled to engage a lawyer and if advocates oppose this principle then it would be destructive of justice dispensation system.
Earlier Friday, a clutch of lawyers who practice in the SC, requested a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud to take suo moto cognisance of the horrific incident. The lawyers said they would put together the facts of the case in writing for the SC.
In Kashmir on Monday, a group of irate lawyers from one community prevented the crime branch of Jammu and Kashmir police from filing a chargesheet against the seven men accused of the rape and murder of eight-year-old girl in Kathua district.
The minor, from a nomad Muslim community, had been held captive, sedated and raped for several days at a temple before she was murdered at Rassana village in Kathua district, according to the J&K Police crime branch investigation based on DNA test, forensic evidence and post-mortem report.
On Monday, as soon as the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the crime branch along with the accused reached the Kathua court complex around 4.15pm, the lawyers began protesting. A police contingent tried to make way for the crime branch team to enter the court complex, but their attempts failed in the face of the rancorous protests by the lawyers.