New Delhi: In a fresh twist to the Kathua Murder and Rape case, four months after six people were convicted, a local court has directed the police to file an FIR against the Special Investigation Team (SIT) that probed the case. According to reports, the SIT allegedly tortured and coerced witnesses to give false statements. An eight-year-old village girl was kidnapped on January 10, 2018, and was allegedly raped in captivity in a village temple for four days before she was killed. The brutal rape and murder shook the entire country leading to nationwide protests.

The court ordered filing of the FIR against the then SSP R K Jalla (now retired), ASP Peerzada Naveed, Deputy Superintendents of Police Shetmbari Sharma and Nissar Hussain, Sub-Inspector Urfan Wani and Kewal Kishore of crime branch of police and asked the SSP (Jammu) to report compliance by next date of hearing on November 11.

“Considered the argument of counsel for the applicant and order of the Supreme Court and the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir. As per the affidavit of the counsel for applicant no proceedings are pending for disposal in the apex court with regard to the case in question,” the court order said.

The case saw an in-camera trial which went on for a year. The trial was shifted to Pathankot in Punjab after lawyers in Kathua attempted to prevent submission of the charge sheet in court.

In June this year, District and Sessions Judge Tejwinder Singh sentenced to life imprisonment the three main accused, while sentencing five years in jail to three others for the destruction of evidence in the case.

The BJP had to sack two of its state ministers, Chowdhury Lal Singh and Chander Prakash Ganga, for participating in a rally in support of the accused.

Sanji Ram, the caretaker of the temple where the crime took place, Special Police Officer Deepak Khajuria and Parvesh Kumar, a civilian, were convicted in the case. Two police officials — Sub Inspector Anand Dutta and Head Constable Tilak Raj — and a special police officer Surender Verma were convicted for destruction of evidence.

(With PTI Inputs)