Locals took out a candle-light march on the Ridge, Shimla, on Monday(Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
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Rape-murder of minor near Shimla: Cops clueless, CM announces Rs 5 lakh for victim’s family

The police team is camping at the crime spot since four days but has been unable to gather clues and specific leads to solve the rape and murder case.
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, Shimla, Shimla
UPDATED ON JUL 17, 2017 02:31 PM IST

The local police is still clueless about a case of rape and murder, where the naked body of school girl was recovered from isolated woods in Kotkhai of Shimla district. Anger over the crime is sweeping the villagers and suburbs in the affluent apple-growing area.

The police team is camping at the crime spot since four days but has been unable to gather clues and specific leads to solve the rape and murder case. Police sent a dog squad along with forensic experts to gather circumstantial evidences, hoping for a breakthrough in the case, but is largely clueless.

Meanwhile, Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh has sanctioned a Rs 5 lakh compensation to the minor victim’s family.

The police announced to set up a special investigation team (SIT) to crack the case. “We have constituted an SIT of inspector general (IG) Southern range SZH Zaidi, additional superintendent of police (rural) Bhajan Dev Negi, deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Theog Manoj Joshi, and station house officer Kotkhai.

“I will monitor the probe from time to time,” said director general of police (DGP) Somesh Goyal. Police have collected evidence from the spot where the body was recovered. “Now there are no chances of evidence collection due to the rainy season,” they said. Additional SP Bhajan Dev Negi said, “Investigation is on. We have collected evidence and have interrogated over a dozen people.”

However, the police have failed to establish the crime spot. A police officer, requesting anonymity, said, “We don’t know if the minor was raped and murdered at the place where the body was recovered from or not. Police do not have idea whether the culprit was one or more. We are banking upon mobile tower signal.”

PUBLIC OUTRAGE

The incident has sparked public outrage in the district. People in Kotkhai staged protests and demanded police to solve the case within ten days or hand it over to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

In Shimla, a social outfit submitted a memorandum to governor Acharya Dev Vrat, saying that the state has failed to probe such cases in the past. “This is an issue concerning women safety. We want CBI probe as state investigation agency is unable to catch the culprits,” said a kin of the victim.

Shimla legislator Suresh Bhardwaj-led BJP delegation met DGP Somesh Goyal and submitted a memorandum. “The state has failed to maintain law and order situation. The chief minister is busy with his own cases and there is no one to look after the rising crime situation,” said Bhardwaj.

HP COPS WILL PROBE BETTER THAN CBI: CM

The CM said that it is a serious issue. “Police is investigating the matter. Our police is better to solve this case than the CBI,” he said, adding, “The compensation can’t bring back the girl but the amount is to assist the family.”

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