The rape-and-murder of the eight-year-old Bakerwal community girl has created a controversy after lawyers in Jammu called for a shutdown on Wednesday, demanding the case be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation.
Union Minister V K Singh on Thursday said “we as humans” had failed the eight-year-old girl who was gang-raped and killed in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district but she would not be denied justice.
The child from the nomadic Bakerwal Muslim community had disappeared from near her home in the forests next to Rasana village in Kathua on January 10. A week later, her body was found in the same area.
Expressing distress over the tragedy, perhaps the first reaction from a Bharatiya Janata Party minister, he said we have failed her as humans.
“But she will not be denied justice,” the minister of state in the external affairs ministry added in his tweet.
A Special Investigation Team formed to probe the incident has arrested eight people, including two Special Police Officers and a head constable, who was charged with destruction of evidence.
A chargesheet filed by the Jammu and Kashmir Police said abduction, rape and killing of the girl was part of a carefully planned strategy to remove the minority community from the area.
The rape has polarised the state with the local bar association calling for a bandh against what it termed the “targeting of minority Dogras”, while the Valley saw protests demanding justice for the deceased.
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said her government will not allow law to be obstructed and justice will be delivered in the rape-and-murder case of the eight-year-old Bakerwal girl in Kathua district.
“The law will not be obstructed by the irresponsible actions and statements of a group of people. Proper procedures are being followed, investigations are on the fast track and justice will be delivered,” Mehbooba said in a tweet.
On Monday, lawyers in Kathua had tried to prevent the Crime Branch from filing the chargesheet in the case. The chargesheet has revealed some chilling details about how the girl was allegedly kidnapped, drugged, raped inside a place of worship before being killed.
Opposition’s National Conference leader Omar Abdullah, however, lashed out at the chief minister for not taking any action against two BJP ministers who had attended a rally held in support of the persons accused in the case.
“What rubbish! They are HER ministers, not the Hon(ourable) PM’s. The way for her to express her displeasure is to sack them in Jammu not come and leak her alleged displeasure in Delhi,” Omar wrote on his Twitter handle.
He was responding to tweets by a journalist from a TV channel in which she had said Mehbooba had expressed displeasure over BJP ministers actions in regard with this case.
However, the journalist later pulled down the tweet.
“So even her displeasure wasn’t genuine and the tweet has had to be deleted so that a corrected version could be issued,” Omar said.