I fear for my life: Lawyer for Kathua rape victim's family

Protestors block the Jammu Pathankot highway in Kathua during the Jammu Bandh on Wednesday

Maliwal launched the protest at Rajghat on Friday in the wake of the horrific rape incidents in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao and Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua districts.

Kour said it was the victim's family which approached the court with a plea that they did not trust the police investigation. The chargesheet names Sanji Ram, the caretaker of the Devisthan, a small temple in Rassana village in Kathua, as the mastermind behind the abduction, rape, and killing.

Jammu is on the boil and we are hopeful that the Supreme court will help defuse the crisis since it is the history of the court that whenever there is a crisis, its intervention helped in defusing the crisis, she said.

In a letter to prime minister Narendra Modi on Thursday, she said: "I will not break my anshan (fast) until the prime minister does not (promise) the country a better system for the safety of our daughters".

BJP's J&K president Sat Sharma said that while taking part in the rally could have been the personal decision of the two concerned Ministers, he was of the opinion that they should have refrained from doing so.

"The shameless SSP Kuthua Suliman Chowdhary worked like a private servant for Lal Singh and other BJP leaders besides those of Ekta Manch", he said. "BJP after feeling the heat within and outside India sacked the ministers and it was by no means any step taken on moral grounds".

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud was also critical of the Jammu High Court Bar Association, which had passed a resolution not to attend the courts saying "it is the duty of the bar association as a collective body and they can not obstruct the process of law". After being missing for a week, her body was found on January 17.

According to reports, the two BJP ministers had gone to the place of agitation at Rasana in Kathua and had attended a meeting in support of the accused to demand a CBI probe in the matter.

"Certain amount of discretion should have been maintained".

He cautioned that there should be no communal politics played over the ghastly crime and everyone should ensure speedy justice and exemplary punishment to the culprits.

Pointing fingers at others while protecting its own was the character of the Congress party, he alleged.

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. "In Jammu, the Congress leaders are casting aspersion over the probe and their senior leaders were creating law and order situation through Bar Council", he alleged. "I believe that at least a part of the blame goes to our system, if maybe, those convicts were hanged, we would not have had to see this day", said Devi. He said the Mehbooba Mufti-led coalition government in the state had been told to withdraw the directive concerning Tribal with regard to encroachments in Jammu.

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