Aarushi case: Parents to fight CBI closure report (Roundup)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

NEW DELHI - A day after the CBI requested for closure of the yet unsolved Aarushi Talwar murder case, her parents are set to file a protest petition in a special court at Ghaziabad, even as Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily accepted that reasons for not solving the over two-year-old case will have to be investigated.

The Central Bureau of Investigation Wednesday sought to close the murders of 14-year-old Aarushi Talwar and domestic help Hemraj as an unsolved case, citing lack of evidence.

Her parents, Nupur and Rajesh Talwar, have consulted with their lawyers and are now planning to file a protest petition against the CBI’s closure report.

“We will be filing a protest petition at the magisterial court where the closure report has been filed,” the parent’s lawyer, Rebecca John told IANS. The family still has to see the CBI report, which lies in a sealed envelope in the court.

She said that traditionally the protest petition is usually filed by the complainant. “Here, the matter is a bit complicated, as Rajesh Talwar had also been an accused. But, we will anyhow file the protest petition seeking that the case may not be closed,” added John.

The parents are also seeking to meet with the CBI director, Amar Pratap Singh. “We will request the CBI director for an appointment. I hope he gives it,” Nupur Talwar told reporters here Thursday.

Aarushi was found murdered under mysterious circumstances in their Jalvayu Vihar apartment in Noida May 16, 2008. The family’s domestic help, Hemraj, whom Noida police initially suspected for the murder, was also found killed on the flat’s terrace a day later.

Rajesh Talwar was arrested and kept behind bars for 50 days in connection with the killings, but was later let off because of lack of evidence. The CBI later arrested his medical assistant Krishna and two other domestic helps in the neighbourhood, Raj Kumar and Vijay Mandal.

All of them were freed after a period of detention while the CBI continued to hunt for material evidence in the sensational case.

According to reports, CBI had mentioned in its closure report that it had not been able to establish either the motive, find the murder weapon or establish that there was forced entry into the house.

Union Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily said the government will look at the lapses in the probe that led to the case remaining unsolved even after more than two years.

“There are some cases where clue can’t be obtained. This is one such case which is most unfortunate. At the same time, we need to know why it couldn’t be done? Why the investigation couldn’t be taken forward? This is something that we need to know,” Moily said in an interview to NDTV Thursday.

The Women and Child Development Minister Krishna Tirath termed the development as “unfortunate” and said the guilty must be punished. Her words were echoed by National Commission for Women chairperson Girija Vyas, who said that investigation in the case “must be continued”.

Meanwhile, the Talwars are also considering approaching the Supreme Court to seek directions on mandatory guidelines for investigative agencies to conduct probe.

“We will be seeking a guideline on how such cases should be handled so that in future instead of sensationalizing a case and ruining people’s image, investigating agencies do clean investigation. The crime scene was not protected, preservation of articles on the crime scene was not done - all this put the case on back foot,” said John, lawyer of Nupur and Rajesh Talwar.

The parents are also insistent that the investigative agency should have conducted a highly-sensitive forensic test, called Touch DNA. “We sought a very advance DNA test the Touch DNA test which would have proved who was the assailant. But it appears they haven’t done the test,” said John.

However, according to a forensic expert, the Touch DNA test may not helped too much in this case. “The touch DNA test is not considered a very robust evidence anywhere in the world as chances of contamination of a sample are very high,” J. Nagaraju, director in-charge and molecular genetics scientist at the CDFD, told IANS.

Meanwhile, social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter were flooded with livid reactions Thursday.

“I am furious to know that the evidence has been tampered with and that CBI has closed the case. What kind of impression does the legal system of our country portray to the rest of the world? This is absolutely outrageous!!” US-based Kritika Bharadwaj posted on Facebook.

An e-campaign has also been started for a protest march next week at India Gate on Jan 6. “Silent protest march in memory of Aarushi Talwar. Friends and family of Aarushi getting together to pray for her soul and campaign for the justice she deserves. Join us on 6th January 2011, 11 a.m. at India Gate, new delhi. We need the support,” said the administration of “Justice for Aarushi” group on facebook

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