New Delhi [India], October 23 (ANI): After the Supreme Court sought a detailed reply from the Gujarat Government in connection with the Bilkis Bano gangrape case, the victim's counsel, Shobha Gupta, said the police officers manipulated the investigation in a manner to misdirect it.
Speaking to ANI, Gupta said, "The Supreme Court appreciated the case and directed a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) inquiry. They found a gruesome offence committed and a charge sheet was filed. Bano's 2.5 year-old child was brutally murdered. She was gang raped, while six other members of her family managed to escape from the mob. She submitted the complaint which was found satisfying by the CBI. They came heavily against the officials and the two doctors, who conducted the post-mortem. It went on to say that the police officers manipulated the investigation in a manner to misdirect it."
Gupta further said the CBI also mentioned that the convicts had dug up some space and put all the bodies which were beheaded and which were somehow filled in the dunk.
"90 kilograms salt was kept in that. All the accused were convicted. The trial court also said that they were found guilty of the manipulation. A disciplinary action should be taken on them and the compensation should be paid to the victim," the lawyer asserted.
The apex court also directed the state government to apprise it about the departmental action taken against the policemen found guilty of negligence of duty.
During the hearing, the victim also submitted in the court that she wanted an enhancement of compensation. To this, the apex court directed her to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP).
In March 2002, Bilkis Bano was gang raped and left for dead alongside 14 members of her family, including her 3-year-old daughter, during the Gujarat riots.
She was then five months pregnant, when rioters attacked her in Vadodara. She had approached the local police station to register a case against the assailants.
However, the police dismissed her case and threatened her of dire consequences if she proceeded with the matter.
She then approached the National Human Rights Commission of India and filed a petition in the apex court.
The matter was later shifted to the Bombay High Court, following which charges were filed against 19 men, including six police officers and a government doctor.
In January 2008, 11 of them were sentenced to life imprisonment for gang rape and murder. (ANI)