PATHANKOT: A court on Monday convicted six males of involvement within the rape and murder of an eight-year-old Muslim girl in occupied Kashmir last yr, mentioned a prosecution lawyer.
The case sparked outrage and criticism of the nation’s ruling party after a few of its members opposed costs being laid.
The girl, from a nomadic Muslim neighborhood that roams the forests of occupied Kashmir, was drugged, held captive in a temple and sexually assaulted for per week earlier than being strangled and battered to demise with a stone in January 2018.
The kidnapping, rape and killing of the kid was a part of a plan to take away the minority nomadic neighborhood from the world, the 15-page cost sheet mentioned.
Amongst these accused had been a Hindu priest and cops, fanning communal tensions between Hindus and Muslims within the space.
“This can be a victory of fact,” prosecution lawyer M Farooqi advised reporters outdoors the courtroom. “The girl and her household has acquired justice right now. We’re happy with the judgment.”
The prosecution was in search of the demise penalty for 3 males – priest Sanji Ram, Deepak Khajuria and Parvesh Kumar – who had been convicted of rape and homicide, he mentioned.
Three others, Surinder Kumar, Tilak Raj and Anand Dutta, had been convicted of lesser crimes of destroying proof.
A lawyer main the authorized crew representing the accused, AK Sawhney, advised reporters they deliberate to attraction the decision.
The case shocked India, which has an appalling report for violence towards girls and women, and led to the introduction of the demise penalty for rapists of women beneath the age of 12.
The trial, held in personal, started over a yr in the past in Pathankot, a city about 70 km from Rasana village in Kathua district, the place the incident occurred, in occupied Kashmir.
The Supreme Court docket shifted the trial to the neighbouring state of Punjab after the lady’s household and lawyer mentioned they confronted demise threats, and native legal professionals and Hindu politicians, together with some from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Celebration, held protests towards police submitting costs in courtroom.
India has lengthy been suffering from violence towards girls and kids. Reported rapes climbed 60 p.c to 40,000 from 2012 to 2016, in accordance with authorities statistics, and plenty of extra go unreported, particularly in rural areas.
In complete there are eight folks accused of involvement within the case. The seventh man, named as Vishal, was discovered not responsible on Monday, Farooqi mentioned, whereas the eighth, a juvenile, is at present awaiting trial.