Hathras case: Supreme Court ‘shocked’, asks UP govt to clarify if witness protection is on and if victim’s family has a lawyer

New Delhi (ILNS): The Supreme Court today took serious note of the events in Hathras where a 19-year-old Dalit girl was allegedly gang-raped, tortured and then killed, allegedly by four upper caste men. Adding to her family’s woes, the UP police forcibly cremated her body in the dead of night. The top court termed these events as “shocking”.

The bench of Chief Justice of India S. A. Bobde and Justices A. S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian discussed the scope of the case at the Allahabad High Court – the high court has taken suo motu cognisance of the case – and also discussed how the scope of that case could be widened.

The top court has asked the Uttar Pradesh government to file an affidavit stipulating whether the witness protection plan is in place for the Hathras case and whether the victim’s family has chosen an advocate.

The top court has asked the government to mention the points clearly in its affidavit.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the UP government, told the court that the affidavit will be filed by Thursday.

Read Also: UP govt affidavit in Supreme Court says permission was taken of Hathras family before cremation

The court had started hearing an appeal by a social activist for the transfer of the Hathras case to the CBI or an SIT, but the investigation has to be monitored either by the Supreme Court or a high court, with a retired or sitting judge as the head of the commission.

The top court has adjourned the hearing to next week.

-ILNS
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