Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir Police's Crime Branch on Saturday cited medical experts in confirming that the minor victim in the Kathua incident – an eight-year-old girl – was actually sedated, sexually assaulted and subsequently murdered.
The Crime Branch also categorically rejected reports in a section of media regarding the Kathua rape-and-murder case as 'false' and 'far from the truth'.
The statement from the J&K Police came in the wake of reports in some section of media as well as the social media platforms regarding the case registered at the Hiranagar Police Station in Kathua district.
"However, for the last couple of days, a section of print/electronic media has published/broadcast information/reports shared on the social media sites as well, which are far from the truth," the Crime Branch said in a release.
"Constrained by the reports, it is to place on record that on the basis of opinion furnished by medical experts, it was confirmed that the victim was found subjected to sexual assault by the accused,'' the Crime Branch said.
The Crime Branch further stated that based on the opinion of the medical experts, Section 376 (D) of the Indian Penal Code was added in the case accordingly.
''The medical opinion also established beyond doubt that the victim was held in captivity and administered sedatives and the cause of her death was asphyxia leading to the cardiopulmonary arrest," it added.
''Over a period of time, Press/Electronic Media and Social Media has been sharing information with regard to the case FIR No. 10/2015 dated 12.01.2013 registered in Police Station, Hilanagar Kathua. After completion of all legal formalities of the investigation, a chargesheet was produced in the competent court of law and Investigating agency is in the process of submitting supplementary chargesheet. However, for the last couple of days, a section of print/ electronic media has published /broadcast information/reports shared on social media sites as well, which are far away from truth. Constrained by this reportage, it is to place on record that on the strength of opinion furnished by medical experts, it has been confirmed that the victim was found subjected to sexual assault by the accused. The medical expert has also opined that hymen of the victim was not found intact. Accordingly, on the basis of medical opinion, section 376 (D) RFC was added in the case. In addition to this, medical opinion has established beyond doubt that the victim was held in captivity and administered sedatives and her cause of death was asphyxia leading to cardiopulmonary arrest,'' the press release issued by the J&K Police said.
Press release....Case FIR No 10/2018 dated 12.01.2018 Police Station Hiranagar Kathua. pic.twitter.com/ek2IsXDpsa
— J&K Police (@JmuKmrPolice) April 21, 2018
The Crime Branch had presented a chargesheet in the local court after completing all legal formalities of the investigation. The investigating agency is also likely to submit a supplementary chargesheet in connection with the case soon.
Section 376 (D) deals with the gang-rape followed by death or persistent vegetative state of the victim and prescribes punishment with imprisonment for life.
A minor girl, belonging to a Bakarwal Muslim family, was kidnapped on January 10 and her body found a week later on January 17 near Rasana village in Hiranagar tehsil in Kathua district.
Police investigations revealed she was held captive inside a temple, sedated and repeatedly raped before her murder.
The J&K Police has filed chargesheet against eight persons in the case.
Meanwhile, in a major development, the Union Cabinet, in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Saturday approved an ordinance to amend the existing POSCO Act for ensuring death penalty for child rapists.
Reacting to the Centre's move, the father of the Kathua rape victim today expressed hope that his child would finally get justice.