Forest guard hoshiyar singh

Forest Guard Hoshiyar Singh row: Yet another uprising for CBI probe

As another dent in the credibility and capability of the State Police, the State High Court has sought a report from State and its police over the probe in alleged rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Bhuntar, Kullu.

Mandi – After public outrage forced the Himachal Pradesh Government to order probe in Kotkhai rape and murder case by the Central Bureau of Investigation, yet another uprising of locals was reported in Seraj Valley in Mandi on Wednesday. The locals are demanding CBI probe in the death of forest guard Hoshiyar Singh (22). Under the banner of the Seraj Manch, hundreds of locals marched to the office of Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Janjheli. The mob also held a ‘chakka jam’ at Janjheli chowk.

The protestors shouted slogan against the State Police Department and the State government. People alleged the current government of patronizing forest, mining, and liquor mafia. They warned the government of more protests in various regions of the State on August 9 if the case isn’t given to CBI for a fair probe.

The protesters said the State police and CID are not competent enough to solve cases like Kotkhai rape and murder of a minor and mysterious the death of Hoshiyar Singh.

The death of the honest forest guard under mysterious circumstances had fueled anger among people after his diary and two suicide notes blamed the Block Officer with five others and forest mafia of mental harassment. Hoshiyar had alleged the forest department and its officials of working in Nexus to carry out illegal felling of trees in the Ketanda beat, Karsog division in Mandi district.

However, as pointed by the amicus curiae and the locals, police did not take any action against forest mafia or made any further arrests.

Though the police and State CID have concluded the investigation by declaring it a suicide, the locals and relatives of the guard are alleging shoddy work by the State law enforcement agencies. Locals had been protesting since June 9 – the day on which Hoshiyar’s body was found hanging upside down from a tree in half-naked condition. He was missing from June 5 and a FIR was also lodged in the local police station.

However, after the police and CID declared it a suicide in their investigation reports, locals have again taken to the streets demanding a CBI inquiry.

Not only the people but the amicus curiae, formed by the State High Court to monitor the investigation in the case, had also raised several serious questions over the investigation carried out by the CID. It had pointed out several details that were missing from the probe report submitted to the court. The court had asked the respondents to file a reply to the questions raised by the Amicus.

In the probe report, CID claimed it a suicide due to consumption of a poison. However, the agency could not explain whether the poison was self-administered or forcefully administered by someone else. The probe report could not establish the exact date and time of the death which is very crucial for the investigation, pointed out the Amicus.

HC seeks report on rape and murder of 8-years-old in Bhuntar

As another dent in the credibility and capability of the State Police, the State High Court had sought the report from the police and the state over the probe in alleged rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Bhuntar, Kullu.

The girl had gone missing on April 20, 2017. Her dead body was found near the Bear in Parla Bhuntar on April 30. The police had registered a case under Section 4 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) and various sections of Indian Penal Code.

However, the police could not trace the culprit since then. A protest had erupted over it following which the HC had taken up suo motu cognizance of the news report published in a daily. The case was listed for July 28 for further hearing. The court sought a report from the Chief Secretary, Home Secretary, Director General of Police (DGP), Kullu Deputy Commissioner (DGP) and Superintendent of Police (SP).

Moreover, locals have warned of protest on July 31 in Kullu.

Photo: Samachar First

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