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Kathua rape, murder case : Bar demands transfer of case to HC, seeks death penalty for accused


Srinagar, Apr 16: Kashmir High Court Bar Association and students across the State on Monday staged protests against the rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua, Jammu in January this year.

Taking to streets, Kashmir High Court Bar Association (KHCBA) demanded death sentence to the guilty in the minor’s rape and murder.

KHCBA president Mian Abdul Qayoom demanded that the case be transferred to High Court as the atmosphere was not “conducive” in Kathua for holding the trial.

“Our demand is that the atmosphere at Kathua is not conducive for holding the fair trial of the case. So, High Court has a wing in Jammu, we have a wing in Srinagar. This case should be transferred to HC itself. They should nominate a judge for this purpose who should be given the exclusive task to complete the trial of this case as quickly as possible,” he said.

Demanding harsh punishment for the guilty, Qayoom said quantum of punishment in the case should not be less than death.

He added Bar was ready to provide legal assistance to the victim’s family. “If somebody approaches us, we will see how we can help them legally. Till today nobody has approached us,” he said.

The lawyers had organized a protest programme in solidarity with the Kathua minor who was brutally raped and killed.

Tourism Contractors Coordination Committee (TCCC) also staged a protest at Lal Chowk here, demanding capital punishment for the accused in the rape and murder of the minor.

The students of Central University Nowgam held a protest seeking action against Kathua lawyers who “shamed their profession” by siding with the accused in minor’s gang rape-and-murder.

Braving rains, the students of Vitasta Law College Nowgam also staged a protest demanding strict action against lawyers who blocked challan and took out a rally in favour of accused.

In Budgam, students of Boys Higher Secondary Beerwah took out a peaceful protest march at Beerwah town.

All Ladakh Students Association Kashmir staged a protest at Lal Chowk, here and demanded capital punishment for the accused.

Reports of protests were also received from Government Degree College (GDC) Mendhar where students demanded exemplary punishment for rapists and murderers of the eight-year-old Kathua girl.

The students assembled at main Chowk Mendhar carrying placards reading “Death to Rapists”, “Nomads will not be cowed down by the cowards” and demanded strict punishment to culprits.

Reports said the protesters dispersed off peacefully after staging a sit-in at main chowk Mendhar.

In Doda, thousands of students from various educational institutions including from GDC Doda staged protest at District Headquarter Doda in Chenab Valley region, demanding justice for the minor girl.

Similar reports of peaceful student protests were also received from other parts of the state including Banihal, Rajouri, Kishtwar, Sogam Kupwara, Ganderbal and Sopore.