Unnao rape case; Foul play in the allegations levelled

A Delhi Court has upheld the finding of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) which ruled out any foul play in the 2019 car accident involving the Unnao rape case survivor.

The CBI concluded that there was no evidence regarding criminal conspiracy hatched among the accused persons, including expelled BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar, who is serving life imprisonment for raping the girl in 2017, with the driver of the truck, which collided with the car carrying the victims.

On July 28, 2019, the Unnao rape survivor, along with her two aunts, and a lawyer, were on their way to meet her uncle Mahesh Singh, who was lodged in Rai Bareilly Jail, when their car collided head on with a truck. The two aunts and the lawyer succumbed to the injuries.

Mr. Mahesh Singh, in his complaint, alleged that the accident was the result of a conspiracy hatched by Sengar along with his associates. He also alleged that in order to execute the conspiracy, the Personal Security Officers (PSOs) who were deployed with the rape victim and her family members were withdrawn which was why they were not accompanying the victims in the car.

District and Sessions Judge Dharmesh Sharma noted, “there was indeed a very diabolical background of the events that had taken place prior to the incident in question, but at the stage of considering taking of cognisance of offences allegedly committed by the accused persons, this court cannot be swayed by public sentiments, media reports nor the aspect of the conviction of accused Kuldeep Singh Sengar”.The court said that the initial investigation by the local police “appears to be tainted, lopsided and attempted to reach a conclusion hastily to pose the incident as a road side accident to please the superiors and the political masters”.

“Despite the fact that the investigation had been taken over by the CBI around 9 p.m. on July 30, 2019, the following day i.e., on July 31, 2019 a hasty conclusion was drawn thereby holding that the incident was a simple case of motor accident,” the court said.

However the acts of omissions, lapses and irregularities committed by the local police had caused no irreparable loss to the foundation of the prosecution, the court added.

“I have no hesitation in holding the findings of the CBI in the final report/charge sheet that there is no case against the accused persons so as to take cognisance and proceed against them under Section 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of IPC r/w Section 120 B of IPC can not be faulted,” the judge said.

The court, further, said that merely because Sengar had been provided with a mobile phone “surreptitiously by the jail authority at Sitapur Jail would not invite an inference that he was involved in the planning the accident”.

It also said that the investigating agency did not find any “direct or remote connection” in the call details records of the accused persons “so as to suggest meeting of minds forging a common purpose and planning the collision of the truck with the ill-fated car”.The court, however, framed charges against the truck driver for causing death by rash and negligent driving, besides framing charges of criminal intimidation against Sengar and his associates.

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