Parents of dead girls allege sexual assault - ECAS Punjab

Parents of dead girls allege sexual assault

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Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 17

In a twist to the case involving the death of three minor girls found listless in a parked car nearly two months back, the parents have moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court alleging sexual assault. The police had claimed that the children had died as a result of suffocation after they locked themselves up in the car.

Seeking probe by an independent agency like the CBI, the petitioners contended fair, impartial and unbiased probe was not expected from the local police. It was, rather, acting in a "blatantly partisan and lopsided manner for certain extraneous, malafide and vexatious considerations".

As the petition filed by Ravi Kumar and other petitioners against the state and its functionaries came up for preliminary hearing before Justice BS Walia's Bench, counsel Harsh Chopra referred to the autopsy report of the victims.

Appearing before the Bench through video-conferencing, he contended that the report suggested that the victims had been subjected to sexual assault, whereas the FIR in the matter was registered only for kidnapping under Section 363 of the IPC. Section 304-A of IPC regarding death by negligence was added subsequently. As such, directions were required to be issued to ensure fair and impartial probe in the matter.

Directions were also sought to the investigating agency to scientifically probe peculiar aspects, attendant facts and the circumstances of the entire case to sift the grain from the chaff. Chopra added that the role of the erring and the delinquent police official, who brazenly violated the sanctity of their uniform, was also required to be looked into.

After accepting the notice issued by Justice Walia's Bench, the state counsel submitted that samples of vaginal swab had been sent for chemical analysis and the report of the same was awaited.

Taking a note of the submissions, Justice Walia fixed the case for September third week.

from The Tribune

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