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CBI expresses reservation in probing Shopian case

September 13, 2009 20:11 IST
The Central Bureau of Investigation has informed the Centre about its reservations on taking up the case of alleged rape and murder of two women in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir and it was upto the government to take a decision.

The statement came from CBI Director Ashwani Kumar on the sidelines of a two-day conference on corruption, when he was asked whether the agency will be taking up the Shopian case.

"We have received the notification. We have informed the government about our reservations. Now it is all up to them, we shall be doing whatever they direct us to do," he told PTI without elaborating on the reasons of reservations.

The Jammu and Kashmir government on September 9 approached the Centre for ordering a CBI probe into the alleged rape-and-murder after the Special Investigating Team failed to make any breakthrough into the case.

A notification issued by the state government to the Department of Personnel requested for a CBI probe into the mysterious death of Neelofar (22) and Aasiya (17), whose bodies were found on May 30 this year.

The state government had informed the Jammu and Kashmir High Court that it would be transferring the case to CBI to which the court had replied that it did not have any objection but would continue to monitor the progress in the case.

According to an official spokesperson of the state, the government formally approached the Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training along with copies of FIR proforma and other related documents of the Shopian case for entrusting the case to the CBI.

Financial Commissioner (Home) issued a notification which says "in pursuance of section six of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir hereby accords its consent to the extension of powers and jurisdiction of the members of CBI to the State."

This has been done for investigation of offences arising out of FIR number 112/2009, regarding gruesome murder of Neelofar Jan, wife of Shakeel Ahmad Ahanger, and Asiya Jan, daughter of Abdul Gani Ahanger, residents of Bongam, Shopian registered in police station, Shopian, the notification said.

CBI spokesman Harsh Bhal had earlier last month expressed the agency's reluctance to take over the investigations.

"CBI would need the cooperation of witnesses, help of general public and help of the relatives of the deceased in the case." In view of this, it will be difficult for CBI to take over investigations. CBI has conveyed its views to the state government," Bhal had said earlier.

This statement had led state Chief Minister Omar Abdullah taking up the matter with a senior Union minister who is later understood to have summoned the Director and asked for restraint.

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