Allahabad HC rejects plea in Hathras case
The Allahabad high court dismissed on Thursday a petition that alleged the government illegally confined the 19-year-old Dalit gang rape victim’s family to their house, with the judges observing that the matter was being heard by the Supreme Court.
This came on a day the victim’s brother rejected allegations by the prime accused in the case – Sandeep Singh -- that the Dalit’s woman family killed her because they disapproved of her relationship with Singh.
“They are trying to pressure a Dalit family and leveling allegations against a family which has lost its daughter. These are afterthoughts aimed at twisting the case and will not sustain,” the victim’s brother said.
“How can one think of killing his own sister? These are tactics being adopted to mislead the probe agencies,” he added.
In high court, a two-judge bench of Justice Pritinker Diwaker and Justice Prakash Padia dismissed the petition filed by an organisation working for the Valmiki community, to which the victim’s family belonged.
“In the aforesaid facts and circumstances of the case, judicial propriety demands that it will not be proper for this court to entertain the present petition on merits, especially when security has been provided to petitioners 1 to 6 and other family members of the deceased victim-girl on the observation made by the Hon’ble apex court and also on the basis of the directions issued by the Lucknow bench of this court,” the judges observed.
On September 14, the victim was raped by four members of Thakur caste in Hathras district when she had gone to the fields to collect cattle fodder.
She was partially paralysed in the attack.
As her condition deteriorated, she was moved to Delhi’s Safdarjung hospital on September 28 and died in the early hours of September 29. At 2.30am the next day, the police forcibly cremated the body without the family’s consent in a field near the village.
Since then, Opposition leaders have made a beeline to the village even as the government has denied she was raped, citing the forensic report. Five police officials have been suspended even as the government has ordered a probe into an alleged “international conspiracy” to defame the administration. The four accused have also garnered significant support in the locality – especially after a mega meeting or mahapanchayat was organised by Brahmin and Thakur communities.
On Friday, Singh wrote a letter to the superintendent of police (SP), Hathras, and claimed he was innocent. He said he was friends with the woman, and blamed her mother and brother for beating her to death because they never accepted his friendship with her.