A couple of days after the Supreme Court issued notice to Bar Council of India (BCI), Jammu and Kashmir Bar Association, Jammu High Court Bar Association and Kathua Bar Association over their conduct in the case of rape and murder of an eight-year-old, the BCI on Sunday said it has formed a 5-member team to investigate the matter.
Speaking to the media after a special meeting, BCI chairman Manan Kumar Mishra said that the probe team will visit Kathua and Jammu and talk to people about the conduct of the local units of the Bar Association. The committee will be submitting its report to the Supreme Court later this week.
Committee will give the report to us & we have to present it to SC on 19. We will request SC to give us additional two days time. We have asked Jammu Bar Association to immediately withdraw their strike: Manan Kumar Mishra, Bar Council of India (BCI) chairman #KathuaRapeCase pic.twitter.com/awzREagSAA— ANI (@ANI) April 15, 2018
"Committee will give the report to us and we have to present it to Supreme Court on 19 (April). We will request the SC to give us additional two days time. We have asked Jammu Bar Association to immediately withdraw their strike," Mishra said.
The Jammu Bar Association and lawyers in Kathua have been opposing the action against the accused in the horrific case, alleging that the minority Dogras were being targeted.
Earlier this month, lawyers took to the streets shouting slogans and trying to block the road outside the court where the chargesheets have been filed.
The eight-year-old girl, who belonged to the nomadic Bakerwal Muslim community, had disappeared from near her home in the forests next to Rasana village in Kathua district on January 10.
A week later, her body was found in the same area, and medical examination pointed towards sexual assault. During initial investigations, police arrested a juvenile. Later, the case was transferred to Jammu and Kashmir Police's crime branch.
Two Special Police Officers (SPOs) and later, another five people, including a former revenue official and the alleged conspirator, who surrendered before the special investigation team, were among those arrested.
(With inputs from agencies)