Jammu, Nov 8: The Jammu and Kashmir crime branch has initiated the process of pressing perjury charges against a witness in the case of rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl after he had retracted from a “confessional statement” recorded in front of a magistrate, officials said Thursday.
A show-cause notice has been served to Ajay Kumar alias ‘Ajju’ by the sessions judge of Pathankot, Tejwinder Singh, asking him to explain on Monday “why an action under section 479-B of Jammu and Kashmir Criminal Procedure Code may not be initiated against him”.
This section provides summary procedure for trial of witnesses deposing contrary to statements recorded under Section 164-A (evidence of material witnesses to be recorded by Magistrate in certain cases).
Kumar had recorded his statement before a judicial magistrate in Jammu on February 27 this year in which he had claimed that Parvesh Kumar alias ‘Mannu’ had given a graphical description about the rape and subsequent murder of the girl belonging to a nomadic minority community.
The notice served on Kumar says “whereas an application has been filed by prosecution for initiating action against you for voluntary and knowingly retracting from your statement under section 164-A CrPC during your deposition as a prosecution witness before court, a show-cause notice is issued to you as to why an action under section 479-B of CrPC may not be initiated against you”.
“You may appear before this court in person or be represented by a counsel on 12.11.2018,” the notice from the sessions court of Pathankot said.
The session judge is holding trial for the gruesome Kathua rape-and-murder case on directions of the Supreme Court.
The trial was assigned to the district and sessions court in Pathankot by the Supreme Court earlier this year after the victim’s family approached with a plea to transfer the case from Kathua.
The eight-year-old girl, belonging to a nomadic tribe, was allegedly kidnapped on January 10 and her body was found on January 17.
It is alleged that she was gang-raped and later murdered. The crime branch has arrested eight people, including a juvenile in the case.
The charge sheet has been filed against Sanji Ram and his juvenile nephew, his son Vishal, special police officers Deepak Khajuria and Surender Verma and friend Parvesh Kumar alias Mannu.
The charge sheet also names head constable Tilak Raj and sub-inspector Anand Dutta — who allegedly took Rs 4 lakh from Sanji Ram and destroyed crucial evidence.
The district and sessions court in Pathankot framed charges of rape and murder against the seven accused in the case on June 8.
Sanji Ram, considered the main accused, is alleged to have hatched the conspiracy with the other accused for kidnapping the girl as part of a strategy to remove the minority nomadic community from the area.
ASI among three cops injured in Rajbagh grenade blast
Srinagar, Jan 17: Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) of police and two traffic cop were injured in a grenade blast near Zero Bridge in Rajbagh area of Srinagar city in Central Kashmir on Thursday afternoon.
Reports said that suspected militants lobbed a grenade on police party near Zero Bridge in Rajbagh.
In the blast, three policemen including an ASI of police and two traffic policemen sustained splinter injuries and were evacuated to SMHS hospital for treatment.
The injured has been identified as Iqbal Singh (ASI of JKAP 14 Bn) and traffic policemen Haris Manzoor (SPO) and Sanullah (Head Constable).
While ASI Iqbal has sustained splinter injuries to both of his legs, Haris suffered an injury to the back side of his neck and Sanullah suffered injuries in his right leg.
SSP Srinagar Imtiaz Ismail Parray confirmed the attack and subsequent injuries to the ASI and two traffic cops.
Soon after the attack, the government forces cordoned off the area and launched a hunt to nab the attackers.
Security forces have launched a massive search operation in Rajbagh and adjoining areas near Zero Bridge after three police personnel including assistant sub-inspector were injured in a grenade attack by the terrorists on Thursday.
Homes and hotels in the area were searched frisking was also carried out. It was the first major terrorist attack in the Srinagar city this year. The injured cops are undergoing treatment at the hospital.
Meanwhile Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) has claimed responsibly of the grenade attack on the forces’ party at Raj Bagh area of Srinagar.
A JeM spokesperson Muhammad Hassan in a statement claimed that two forces personnel were killed and 6 critically injured in the attack.
An ASI of police and two traffic cops were injured in a grenade blast near Zero Bridge, Raj Bagh in Thursday afternoon.
2018 has been remarkable year for forces: Army commander
Srinagar, Jan 17: A top army commander on Thursday described 2018 as “remarkable year” for government forces, saying that more than 250 militants were killed, 54 others were arrested and four others surrendered in Kashmir Valley.
“The year 2018 has been a remarkable year for armed forces on the security front. As per the record of last ten years, army along with other forces have neutralized many militants. Many militants have surrendered under pressure and many others were arrested alive,” said Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, GoC-in-C Northern Command told reporters after inaugurating Kalai Bridge constructed by Border Roads Organization.
“More than 250 militants were killed, 54 others arrested and four others have surrendered,” he said, adding, “This speaks about the strength of our security establishment,” the officer said.
He said that the army was giving “befitting reply” to Pakistan army along the Line of Control whenever there were instances of any ceasefire violation or snipping.
“As per wireless and other intercepts, Pakistan army and militants suffered a huge loss in our retaliatory action.”
The Kalai Bridge spans over Suran River and connects Kalai area to Chandak area in Poonch district. During the inaugural function, the Army Commander addressed the gathering of Army, GREF and local residents and said that the Kalai bridge is an important milestone towards enhancing the road communication in the area.
“The bridge is an important strategic asset as it enhances the movement of military equipment and troops in a faster time frame,” he said. The Indian Army and BRO have been working towards infrastructure development in the remote and far-flung areas and improving the road connectivity, he said.
“The bridge will reduce traffic congestion in the city and ease out inconvenience caused to the people specially those moving towards Budha Amarnath Shrine in Mandi as it reduces the travelling time considerably.”
The Army Commander appreciated the contribution of the District Administration for their support and cooperation during the construction of the bridge.
Beg to differ: Omar Abdullah
Srinagar, Jan 17: Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference (NC) vice-president Omar Abdullah on Thursday lashed out at the Northern Command Chief Lt General Ranbir Singh, on his “great year for security forces” remark.
Taking to Twitter, Abdullah wrote, the compulsion of killing militants/terrorists shouldn’t be treated as a cause for celebration.
“I beg to differ, a great year would be one in which no young man would join militancy, no terrorists would be killed & no security personnel would lose their lives in encounters. The compulsion of killing militants/terrorists shouldn’t be treated as a cause for celebration,” Abdullah wrote.
Abdullah was reacting to a statement by Gen Singh on the sidelines of the inauguration of the Kalai bridge in Poonch district. Gen Singh said 2018 had been a great year for the security forces as they had managed to kill 250 terrorists.
Heartening to meet Kashmiri students in Bangladesh: Shahid Afridi
Srinagar, Jan 17: Star Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi on Thursday met Kashmiri students in Bangladesh and interacted with them.
Afridi said that it was heartening to see Kashmiri students in Bangladesh who are studying medicine.“Heartening meeting with some Kashmiri students who are in Bangladesh on scholarship, studying Medicine. Keep up the hard work and making your people proud!,” he tweeted.
Afridi in the past has been in controversies over Kashmiri over his support to the Kashmir cause. He has been vocal about letting the people of Kashmir decide their future.