Calcutta High Court orders CBI enquiry into Hanshkhali gangrape case

A division bench of Justice Prakash Srivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj ordered the agency to submit a report on the progress of investigation on May 2, the next date of hearing.

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The order read, “In the circumstances of the case and after considering the above legal position, we are of the opinion that in order to have fair investigation in the matter and to instill confidence in the family members of the victim and also the residents of the locality and the State, the investigation should be carried out by the CBI instead of the local police. Hence, we direct the State Investigating Agency to hand over the investigation to the CBI with immediate effect.”

It further said, “The State Investigating Agency will hand over all the papers relating to the investigation along with the custody of the accused persons to the CBI forthwith. The CBI will furnish a report about the progress of investigation before this Court on the next date of hearing. The concerned authorities are also directed to extend full protection to the family members of the victim and witnesses of the case.”

The court opined that the ‘entire case may be based upon the circumstantial evidence because the dead body has been cremated hurriedly, therefore, minute investigation with advanced technology is required.”

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday had cast doubts about the details of the gangrape-murder of the 14-year-old girl in Nadia district, asking whether the teenager was raped or was she already pregnant. Speaking in the presence of West Bengal police chief Manoj Malaviya at an event in Kolkata, the chief minister claimed that the girl was having an affair with the accused, and alleged that the Opposition parties and media were giving a “political twist” to the incident.  Her remarks attracted sharp censure from Opposition parties which called them ‘insensitive’ and ‘unfortunate.’

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