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Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019

Jessica case: Police laxity cost her the case

Seven years was long time. Her family had lost hope much before that, writes Shakti Sharma.

india Updated: Mar 03, 2006 16:32 IST
Shakti Sharma
Shakti Sharma

Jessica Lall was shot dead seven years ago. A case was filed, suspects were rounded up, witnesses gave statements, then retreated, and the accused were freed. That ended the case.

Seven years was long time for her family. They had lost hope much before that.

Things could have been different had the police hurried things up a bit.

Investigations have revealed that material evidence collected at the site of murder was not sent for forensic examination for nearly two and a half months.

When a reply was sought from Delhi Police Commissioner KK Paul, he said that the matter was being probed into and directives of the Delhi High Court will be followed.

It was also revealed that police filed the chargesheet without considering forensic reports on the evidences collected.

In a murder case, the law mandates that the chargesheet has to filed within 90 days from the arrest of first accused.

Otherwise, the accused is entitled to seek bail.

The used bullets, the blood-stained clothes, pieces of the seized car, along with the remaining evidences, were kept in on corner of the police station in stead of being sent for examination.

As a result, at the time of filing the chargesheet, the police only had the account of Manu Sharma, the main accused, to back themselves up.

Manu, who had fired two bullet shots, came under scanner. One of the bullets passed through the false ceiling of the hall where the party was going on, while the other killed Jessica.

Later on, a forensic report by the CFSL indicated that the bullets were fired from two different weapons. The case fell flat.

On conditions of anonymity, a senior police officer said that one of the bullets was switched, either at the police station or at the CFSL laboratory.

The case had already received a major setback due to the CFSL report. However, the police sent the bullets to the same lab for a second opinion.

First Published: Mar 02, 2006 00:00 IST

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