On Monday, Eight people accused of raping and killing an eight-year-old in January in Kathua, Jammu and Kashmir, pleaded not guilty and asked the judge for a Narco Analysis test.
As the trial in the case,began in Kathua, seven of the accused were produced before District and Sessions Judge who asked the State Crime Branch to give them copies of the charge sheet and fixed April 28 as the next date of hearing.
Eighth accused is a juvenile, who has moved a bail application before the chief judicial magistrate. The matter was posted for April 26.
Child from a minority nomadic community was allegedly held in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district for a week in sedation and sexually assaulted before being bludgeoned to death.
According to Chargesheet filed by Crime Branch, the abduction, rape and killing of the girl was part of a carefully planned strategy to remove the nomadic community from the area. A separate charge sheet was filed for the juvenile.
Counsel for the accused demanded a copy of the charge sheet filed by the Crime Branch on April 9 before the chief judicial magistrate.
Immediately after the brief hearing in the sessions court, accused were shifted back to the jail under heavy security.
Special Police Officer Deepak Khajuria, who is alleged to have repeatedly raped the child, said from the police van that he was also demanding a narco test, also known as the “truth test”, and a CBI probe.
There was heavy police presence at Kathua court complex following the tension on April 9 when members of local bar association did not allow the Crime Branch to submit the charge sheet in the case.
Sanji Ram, caretaker of the ‘devisthan’ in the village in Kathua, about 90 km from Jammu, is listed as the main conspirator behind the crime.
He was allegedly joined by special police officers Khajuria and Surender Verma, friend Parvesh Kumar alias Mannu, Ram’s nephew, a juvenile, and his son Vishal Jangotra alias “Shamma”.
The charge sheet also names investigating officers head constable Tilak Raj and Sub-Inspector Anand Dutta, who allegedly took ₹4 lakh from Ram and destroyed crucial evidence.
In a narco analysis test, the subject is injected with sodium pentothal or sodium amytal. The dose is dependent on the person’s sex, age, health and physical condition. It does not have any legal sanctity as evidence until a court gives permission to conduct these tests. The test only helps as corroborative and not as primary evidence.