Friday, March 23, 2018 | 1:43 PM

Bureaucrat masterminded Kathua girl’s rape, murder: Report

Sunday, March 11, 2018

As the mastermind named by Kashmir police in Kathua minor rape and murder is yet to be arrested, the family of the minor girl has complained of slow pace of the investigation because of political interference, NDTV reported.

The report quoting the Crime Branch of police said that the 60-year-old Sanji Ram, who is a retired bureaucrat, motivated Deepak Khajuria, the special police officer for abduction, rape and murder of the girl with the intent of driving out Muslim nomad families from Rasana village in Jammu. The NDTV report further said that Sanji Ram was also the main driver in the Hindu Ekta Manch protests against the Crime Branch probe.

The girl was kidnapped on January 10 after which she was drugged and raped, while her mutilated body was found on January 17. Four men including two special police officers were arrested in the case.

“The Crime Branch has also arrested two policemen, including a sub-Inspector, for destroying evidence. The cops from Kathua district police, investigating the case, had washed the blood-soaked clothes of victim before sending the evidence to forensic laboratory. The Crime Branch’s investigation has met with stiff resistance from the Hindu Ekta Manch. The group has been protesting against the arrests.

Even the BJP Ministers in the JK administration joined the chorus against the probe and demanded that the case be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

Quoting officials, the report says Sanji Ram is also the custodian of the facility, referred to as “Devasthan”, where the 8-year-old girl was held captive for a week. The nomad families say that the Crime Branch has caved in to protests and political pressure, and is therefore deliberately avoiding the arrest.