On Monday, a specific court in Pathankot sentenced six of the seven involved in the Kathua rape and murder case.
Those convicted include former revenue official Sanji Ram, Special Police Officers Deepak Khajuria and Surender Verma, two investigating officers — head constable Tilak Raj and sub-inspector Anand Dutta and a civilian, Parvesh Kumar.
The prosecution team, including lawyers J K Chopra, SS Basra, Harminder Singh and Bhupinder Singh, said it had demanded capital punishment for the main accused and may appeal against the sole acquittal.
“We have sought capital punishment against all three accused convicted of murder and gang rape. It was hard work of all of us and a perfect blend of investigation and legal brains. We have achieved 99 per cent result,” the statement said.
The case was moved from Jammu and Kashmir to Pathankot following a Supreme Court order after lawyers in Kathua precluded Crime Branch officials from registering a charge sheet in the case.
The crime branch of J&K Police had filed the charge sheet against eight persons, including a juvenile. The trial against the juvenile is yet to begin as his petition on determining his age is to be heard by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court.
Three others — Sub-Inspector Anand Dutta, Head Constable Tilak Raj and SPO Surender Verma — who was convicted for the elimination of evidence under Section 201 of the RPC, were given sentences of five-year rigorous imprisonment plus a fine of Rs 50,000 each. Ram’s son Vishal Jangotra was acquitted in the case.
The court entrapped charges under appropriate sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC), including Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 302 (murder) and 376-D (gang-rape), according to the prosecution.
The court also double-crossed charges of destruction of evidence and causing hurt by poisoning under Section 328 of the RPC.