Kathua rape-murder: Latest updates

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PDP calls meeting tomorrow

The PDP leadership will meet tomorrow in Srinagar to discuss the situation emerging following the brutal gangrape and killing of an eight-year-old girl in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua, a party spokesman said today.
According to PDP sources, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, who will chair the meeting, is likely to tell the BJP, a coalition partner in the ruling coalition in the state, to ask its ministers – Lal Singh and Chander Prakash Ganga – to resign.
The two ministers had attended a meeting in the girl’s village in support of the accused in the case and demanded a CBI probe in the matter last month.
“A meeting of senior party leaders is being held tomorrow and important issues relating to political, party and administration in J&K will be discussed,” PDP chief spokesman Rafi Ahmed Mir said.
The leaders may also discuss the emerging situation in Jammu, he said.
Asked whether Mehbooba Mufti has given an ultimatum to the BJP to sack the two ministers, Mir said it is matter to be discussed between the alliance partners “and after that we well see”.
“The most important point is whether Mehbooba Mufti has become weak due to their (BJP ministers) visit to that place. She has not become weak but completed investigation into the case,” he emphasised.
Replying to another question on the remarks of Tourism Minister and Mehbooba Mufti’s brother, Tassaduq Mufti, the PDP leader said “he said the truth”.
“We are very concerned and perturbed about (the situation in Jammu)”, Mir said, adding, “He said the right thing and there is nothing new in it.”
Yesterday, Tassaduq Mufti said the Peoples Democratic Party has become a “partner in crime with the BJP and the gradual schism of state’s residents may lead to unprecedented bloodshed.”
He said he cannot remain quiet just because he is in the government and that the PDP will have to “take one last bow and apologise to people for having unknowingly pushed them into something they did not deserve.”
“I am not going to remain quiet and act as if I am unmoved by the tragedy that is unfolding at the ground level, just because I am a part of the government,” he said.
The body of the girl was recovered from woods on January 17, a week after she had gone missing while grazing horses in a village in Kathua district.
On January 23, the government had handed over the case to the crime branch, which formed a Special Investigation Team and arrested eight people, including two Special Police Officers (SPOs) and a head constable, who was charged with destruction of evidence.

Kathua rape victim’s family should get justice: Rajnath:

Home Minister Rajnath Singh said her family should get justice.
The Home Minister also said he has spoken to BJP President Amit Shah and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on the issue.
“The victim’s family should get justice,” Singh told reporters when asked about the case.
The minor girl, who belonged to the nomadic Bakerwal Muslim community, had disappeared from her her house in Kathua on January 10. A week later, her body was found in the same area, and medical examination pointed towards sexual assault.
During initial investigations, the police arrested a juvenile. Later, the case was transferred to the Jammu and Kashmir Police’s Crime Branch.
Two Special Police Officers (SPOs) were also arrested, and later, five more people, including a former revenue official and the alleged conspirator, surrendered before the Special Investigation Team.

Bollywood outraged over Kathua rape and murder:

Bollywood stars such as Hrithik Roshan, Priyanka Chopra Sanjay Dutt are among the celebrities who made a rallying call for swift action and deliverance of justice in the Kathua rape and murder case.
Prominent B-Town artistes Alia Bhatt, Anushka Sharma, Kalki Koechlin and Ayushmann Khurrana took to Twitter to express their disgust over the brutal crime.
Taking to Twitter, Hrithik Roshan wondered about the human capability to commit heinous crimes.
“This really the work of human beings? Breaks my heart to know we are capable of such atrocities. We need even more activism, courage, outspokenness, communication, awareness and aggression. Whatever we need to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Lets do it! Punishment? Education? Whatever it takes!” the actor wrote.
Priyanka, who is currently shooting for her show “Quantico” in Ireland, tweeted, “How many more children… Will be sacrificed at the intersect of religion & politics? How many more children will have to suffer unimaginable crimes before we wake up? I’m disgusted. It’s time for swift action.”
Alia also expressed shock over the incident and demanded justice for the victim.
“Can’t believe this is happening! Shocked and appalled at what this has come to… Really hope justice is served! Really really really hope,” Alia tweeted.
Sanjay Dutt said he is “filled with anger” and called the incident the failure of the “society”.
“We have failed as a society! Being a father, I am shaken and filled with anger reading about what happened to a 8-year-old kid. I refuse to accept we really let this happen. Justice has to be served now (sic),” he tweeted.
Anushka Sharma tweeted, “The cruellest form of evil is harming an innocent child. What is happening to the world we live in? These people should be given the most severe punishment there is! Where are we heading as humanity? Shaken to my core.”
Parineeti Chopra also expressed shock over the “evil acts on another human” and wrote, “How do human beings go through evil acts on another human? During an act, how do they not stop? Is there no conscience? No guilt? No regret? No humanity? How do you allow yourself to go through raping and killing a child? Cannot understand it.”
Actor Sidharth Malhotra said such crimes must be not go unpunished.
“Filled with so much anger and disgust over what has happened… Only demons would inflict cruelty like this on an 8 year old. Pray for her soul… These atrocities need to end and it needs to end now,” he tweeted.
Aditi Rao Hydari wrote, “They are monsters, they drugged, raped and murdered a little girl. They are monsters, they defended the crime in the name of religion. We are monsters if we don’t raise our voices and make sure they are punished…”
Director Karan Johar called the incident “inhuman”and “appalling”, and pleaded for justice.
Ayushmann wrote, “A child deserves only love irrespective of caste, color, religion. And a rapist deserves only punishment irrespective of caste, colour and religion.”
Jaaved Jaaferi tweeted, “Kids are being indoctrinated with hate and encouraged to indulge in heinous crimes… Accused/ perpetrators having support in rallies chanting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’, religious slogans and waving the tricolour. Seriously need a wake up call.”

The crime branch filed a main chargesheet against seven accused on Monday and one separate chargesheet against another accused, who was earlier said to be a juvenile, at a court in Kathua district on Tuesday. (PTI)

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