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‘BCI’s clean chit to Kathua lawyers is reminiscent of Press Council’s subversion in Kunan Poshpora case’

A group of activists under the banner of Kashmir Solidarity Forum has strongly condemned the ‘immature and careless’ comment by the newly appointed Deputy CM Kavinder Gupta over the rape and murder of 8 year old child.

Kashmir Solidarity Forum, in a statement has demanded that the culprits should be brought to justice through a speedy trial and Supreme Court should take note of the instances like these where the offending lawyers are being institutionally shielded by the Bar Council of India.

“We demand that immediate action be taken against those lawyers and the rule of law should be allowed to prevail.
In the interest of impartiality and justice, the case should be transferred outside of the Kathua court,” the statement said.

Gupta, hours after taking oath had said that the Kathua rape and murder case is a ‘small incident.’

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The statement also pointed out that the clean chit of the Bar Council of India to the lawyers who obstructed the filing of challan in the case is reminiscent of similar subversion of the  ‘fact finding’ team of the Press Council of India in the Kunan Poshpora case.

“When the rule of law which the Indian state boosts about, should prevail, the institutions like Bar Council of India are actively supporting the subversion of the legal processes. Kashmiris have a strong memory and the clean chit by the BCI reminds Kashmiris of the similar subversion in the name of fact finding by the Press Council of India in the case of KunanPoshpora. There is documentary evidence that the Kathua Bar Association not only interrupted the work of the Crime Branch but also prevented them from performing their duty. And preventing public officials from performing the duty is a punishable offense under the law of the land, ” the statement said.

ALSO READ: Kunan Poshpora to Kathua: Shielding perpetrators through institutional disinformation campaign

“But instead of taking a strong note of this uncivil and unprofessional act, the Bar Council of India has come to the rescue of the offenders and called their actions not only valid but also supported their demands indirectly. Although BCI’s support to J&K Bar Association, Jammu goes beyond its mandate in the case, but it has chosen to play its elder brotherly role towards the offenders from Jammu. However, this move is not surprising. A similar role was played by the Press council of India by giving clean chit to the accused of the mass rapes in the two villages of Kunan Poshpora in Kupwara,” the statement further said.

The forum in its statement also pointed out that both PDP and the BJP are trying to save their constituencies.

“On one hand two ministers who participated in pro-rapist rallies where shown door and in another move the MLA who is have been seen in pro-rapist rallies has been elevated as minister. People of Kashmir are very well aware about these dual policies.”

Rajiv Jasrotia, the MLA of Kathua who was present during the rally organized by the Hindu Ekta Manch, was sworn in as the Forest Minister, the portfolio held by the ousted minister Lal Singh.

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