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SC dismisses plea for transfer, re-probe in Kathua rape-murder case

SC dismisses plea for transfer, re-probe in Kathua rape-murder case

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a plea by an accused seeking transfer of investigation into rape-murder of an eight-year-old minor nomadic girl in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua from the state police to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

"We are not allowing it", the court told senior counsel Ranjit Kumar appearing for the accused.

Rejecting the plea for transfer of investigation as devoid of merit, the bench of Justice Uday Umesh Lalit and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud also rejected another plea for fresh probe into the case as the petitioner alleged that earlier probe by the State police was motivated and botched up.

Refusing to entertain the plea for a fresh probe, Justice Lalit said, "We see no reason to interfere. This matter does not require de novo investigation."

The lawyer told the court that investigation by State police was "motivated and botched up" and sought to point out some of the infirmities, Justice Lalit said, "If that is so, bring it in your cross-examination."

"If it is a motivated and botched up investigation why are you worried", Justice Lalit said telling the lawyer that all this can be pointed out in the course of trial.

At this point when court inquired the stage of trial, the petitioner lawyer seeking fresh investigation said that 80 witnesses have already been examined and there were other 226 witnesses.

Observing that "this is not a matter worthy of reinvestigation", the court dismissed the plea.

The top court had on May 7 transferred the trial in the case from Kathua to Pathankot in Punjab.

The court had also ordered that the Pathankot District and Sessions Judge would hold the trial in-camera and on day-to-day basis with no adjournments.

On July 9 the top court ordered the shifting of seven accused to the district jail in Punjab's Gurdaspur.

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