'Give security to Kathua victims', Supreme Court directs JK government

India: Men Accused of 8-Year-Old's Rape, Murder Deny Charges as Protests Continue

'Give security to Kathua victims', Supreme Court directs JK government

Nine-year-old Mahek stood calmly amid a crowd of approximately 1000 protesters, as a flock of press photographers furiously clicked her pictures. Father of the victim has told the media the body was finally buried in far away forest lands. "We have full faith in the Constitution and Courts of the country, but we want justice to be given as soon as possible and create an example so that such heinous acts are not done again", said Almas Malik, a college student.

The Supreme Court has also issued a notice to the Jammu and Kashmir state government seeking a reply on the Kathua rape and murder case plea that was file by the victim's father.

Amid public outrage over Kathua and Unnao cases, Congress President Rahul Gandhi yesterday asked PM Narendra Modi to fast track cases of rapes of minors and punish the guilty if he was serious about providing justice to the country's daughters.

The 8-year-old girl had been walking her horses in a meadow in Kathua when she was kidnapped, force-fed sedatives, starved and gangraped repeatedly over a period of 5 days before she was strangled to death and her head was bashed in.

Prime accused Sanji Ram (R) and other accused of Kathua rape and murder case.

Meanwhile, Students of Government Post Graduate (PG) Degree College Bhadarwah also staged a protest and took out a protest rally to demand exemplary punishment for rapists and murderers of eight-year-old girl. The bar associations have been opposing the action against the accused, alleging that the minority Dogras were being targeted. The BJP government is trying to save the culprits involved in the case.

'Give security to Kathua victims', Supreme Court directs JK government
'Give security to Kathua victims', Supreme Court directs JK government

A little girl holds a placard during a protest event in Chennai on Sunday.

Jaising pleaded that the trial should be transferred from Kathua to a local court outside the state, preferably in Chandigarh, as the situation there was "surcharged and polarised" and moreover, there has been non-cooperation from the local bar. The matter was posted for April 26.

"Muslims live in fear of the shape of the next round of attacks, even as the rights of Dalits and adivasis enshrined in the Constitution are being questioned".

It lists the caretaker of "Devisthan", a small temple, in a village in Kathua, about 90 km from here, as the main conspirator behind the crime. "There is no scope for delaying any further a meaningful and bold response to what has now developed into a moral, political and humanitarian challenge for this billion-plus nation", she said.

Sherwani said that ignoring the communal muscle flexing, evident in the Kathua incident, obscured the wider context of the communal polarisation of Indian society. The petition also said that the lawyer representing the girl's family in Kashmir had faced threats.

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