US offers FBI help in Jiah Khan case | bollywood | Hindustan Times
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US offers FBI help in Jiah Khan case

bollywood Updated: Jan 28, 2014 11:09 IST

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A week after the US authorities expressed willingness to help probe actor Jiah Khan's death case, they have assured her mother Rabiya Khan that a reminder would be sent to Indian officials offering their assistance, her lawyer said on Monday.

Jiah, who had starred opposite Amitabh Bachchan in Ram Gopal Varma's 2007 flick Nishabd, was found hanging from a ceiling fan at her Juhu home on June 3 last year. She was 25 at the time of her death. She was in a turbulent relationship with Sooraj Pancholi, son of actors Aditya Pancholi and Zarina Wahab.
Rabiya, who suspects her daughter was murdered, has since been demanding a CBI probe in the case.

However, the police have earlier this month filed a chargesheet accusing Sooraj of abetment to suicide, but said it found no evidence to suggest Jiah was murdered.

Rabiya had said last week that she would move the Bombay high court seeking a reinvestigation of the case by CBI or a Special Investigation Team from the angle of possible murder. The development came after the Mumbai Police charged actor Sooraj Pancholi with abetting the British-American actor's suicide.

Rabiya, a British passport holder, had also written to US ambassador to India Nancy Powell seeking FBI's assistance in the reinvestigation as Jiah was an American citizen.

A communication was received from the US embassy that while the FBI was willing to support the investigation in an advisory role, it cannot do so unilaterally, without Indian law enforcement agencies agreeing.

A subsequent communication from Rosemary Macray, chief of the American Citizens Services Unit, said the legal attache at the US embassy had on January 21 itself sent a request letter to the CBI whose response to the offer of partnering with the US agency in the probe was awaited.

"We met Rosemary Macray, chief of the American Citizens Services Unit, and we were told that the consulate will send reminders to the Indian authorities offering help from the FBI in all possible respects, especially forensics," Rabiya's lawyer Dinesh Tiwari said.

"Nobody from the FBI was, however, present at the meeting," he said, adding Rabiya also submitted various documents related to the case to Macray.