Crime

Prime accused in ‘Sex Scandal’ Ex Adv General Sethi among 38 lawyers defending Kathua rape accused

File Photo of Accused Sanjhi Ram Being taken for the hearing to court in Pathankote.

One of 38 lawyers defending Kathua rape accused, Anil Sethi was named ‘prime suspect’ the 2006 ‘sex scandal’ case

Sethi was ‘wanted’ by CBI, after Sabeena, the kingpin of the sex racket named him along with some politicians

In the Kathua rape and murder case, where an eight-year-old nomad Muslim girl, was abducted, raped and murdered in Hiranagar area of Kathua district in January, to frighten and drive out Muslim nomads from the Jammu region, the accused have hired a total of 38 lawyers to defend themselves.

One of the top names that have appeared on the list is that of Ex Advocate General Anil Sethi.

ALSO READ: Kathua rape and murder case: ‘Goons’ have cut off water supply of Rasana Muslims, alleges NC lawmaker

Sethi was one of the seven persons named in the infamous Kashmir ‘Sex Scandal’ case.

However two persons, including Sethi was acquitted in the same case due to benefit of doubt.

Sethi was one of the prime accused in the case pertaining to sexual exploitation of young girls, and had surrendered before a Jammu court after being absconding. Sethi was wanted by CBI, after Sabeena, the kingpin of the sex racket named him along with some politicians, police officers, bureaucrats and businessmen.

ALSO READ: Jammu, Bakerwals, Sangh and the rape and murder of a minor: Full text of Talib Hussain’s speech at JNU

The Central Bureau of Investigation had announced a reward of Rs 2 lakhs for information leading to his arrest.

Sethi then had turned up before the First Class Judicial Magistrate Amit Sharma. Eyewitnesses had said that Sethi made his dramatic appearance before Duty Magistrate Jammu and pleaded that he wanted to surrender before the court.

ALSO READ: More shockers from Kathua: After rally for paedophile-rapist, now botched up probe

After the Sex Scandal case, his name has surfaced in the Kathua rape and murder case, but this time, he is not the accused but is defending the rape accused.

The lawyers in Kathua, from the Kathua Bar Association and the Jammu Bar Association had tried to prevent the Crime Branch from filing the chargesheet in the rape and murder case. However the police, after calling reinforcements had filed the chargesheet.

ALSO READ: Kathua rape and murder: Raising triclour in rally in support of the accused amounts to desecration: Mehbooba

“We have filed charge sheet against seven accused persons and charge sheet against a juvenile person will be field separately,” IGP Syed Afadul Mujtaba had said.

The President of the Bar, Kirty Bhushan Mahajan had said, “All Bar members strongly condemn the conduct of the Crime Branch in the case. The state government has failed to deal with the issue and understand the sentiments of the people. The agitation of the Bar was successful and the Crime Branch was compelled to go back and the Challan could not be presented in the court.”

ALSO READ: Watch: Ankur Sharma, lawyer of the Kathua accused says Kashmiris have gone ‘insane’ as Hindus have united under Hindu Ekta Manch

The Civil society along with lawyers from the Bar Association and ruling Bhartiya Janata Party then took out a rally by the name of Hindu Ekta Manch in supoprt of the accused.

Ankur Sharma, then the defence lawyer of the five out of seven accused in the Kathua rape and murder case, in a video had said that the people of Kashmir have gone ‘insane’. The reason for their ‘worry’, he had said, was that “you people (Hindus) have united as one” while referring to the Hindu Ekta Manch, which was formed in support of the accused.

ALSO READ: Killers of minor Kathua girl shielded under political patronage, says Tribal Activist Talib Hussain

The Supreme Court (SC) had directed the Jammu and Kashmir government to provide police protection to Kathua victim’s family members and their lawyers. The victim’s lawyer, Advocate Deepika Singh Rajawat had said that she was being threatened for taking up the case. The victim’s father had also asked the apex court for adequate security for family members of the victimAdvocate Rajawat and her family members, and Advocate Talib Hussain.

The SC in May had transferred the trial of the case to Pathankot in Punjab.

The apex court had earlier said that the case will be shifted out of JK at the ‘slightest possibility of lack of a fair trial’.  A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud said its “real concern” was to see that a fair trial was conducted.

The trial later began in the court of District and Session Judge, Pathankot, Punjab, amid tight security, on May 1.

Here is the full list of the lawyers defending accused.(As per Power of Attorneys on record).

(1) Mr. Anil Sethi, Adv. (744/89JK)
(2) Mr. Anmol Sharma, Adv.(206/2009JK) for Deepak Khajuria (accused no.1) and Anand Dutta (accused no.7).
(3) Mr. Rohit Verma, Adv. (D-1712/2004)
(4) Mr. Kasturi Lal, Adv.(675 of 2005JK)
(5) Mr. Javed Anwar Mirza, Adv.(523/2010JK).
(6) Mr. Manav Sharma, Adv., (100/2016JK) counsel for Surinder Kumar (accused no.2).
(7). Mr. Ankur Sharma, Adv. (JK-513/19.12.2015-2015 ),counsel for Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3), Vishal Jangotra (accused No.4), Sanji Ram (accused no.5).
(8). Mr. Subhash Chander Sharma, Adv.( P.467/1985) Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3), Vishal Jangotra (accused No.4), Sanji Ram (accused no.5).
(9). Mr. H.S. Pathania, Adv. (P.1041/1982),
(10). Mr. Vikrant Mahajan, Adv. (P-1571/2007).
(11). Mr. Ajay Dhadwal, Adv., (P-938/1995).
(12). Mr. Racchpal Thakur, Adv. (P-397/1992).
(13). Mr. Sanjeev Mahajan, Adv. (P-469-A/1987).
(14). Mr. Vinod K. Mahajan, Adv. (P-293/2011).
(15). Mr. Amit Verma, Adv. (P-5/1993).
(16). Mr. Ajay Lalotra, Adv. (P-1912/1994).
(17). Mr. Ajay Pathania, Adv. (P-990/1992).
(18). Mr. J.P. Singh, Adv. (P-3135/2015).
(19). Ms. Sonam Chopra, Adv. (P-3699/2017).
(20). Mr. Jatinder Jaggi, Adv. (P-533/2016).
(21). Mr.Ravinder Jaggi, Adv. (P-3304/2008).
(22). Mr. Deepak Rasotra, Adv. (P-3638/2009)
(23). Mr. Gaurav Partap Singh Pathania,Adv.(P-3146/2013 ).
(Advocates mentioned at No.9 to No. 23 are representing Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3), Vishal Jangotra (accused No.4) and Sanji Ram (accused no.5).
(24). Mr. Ajay Sharma, Adv. ( P-3015/1999 ).
(25). Mr. Sandeep Sharma, Adv. (P-1686/1999), counsel for Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3).
(26). Mr. A.K. Sawhney, Adv. (P/672/1976)
(27). Mr. Aseem Sawhney, Adv. (P-117-A/2002)
(28). Mr. Neeraj Singh, Adv. (551/2014JK)
(29). Mr. Utkarsh Pathania, Adv. (89/2016JK).
(30). Mr. Shiv Dev Singh Thakur. Adv. (JK-116/2017).
(31). Mr. Anil Sharma,Adv. (20/2017JK), counsel for Tilak Raj (accused No.6).
(32). Master Mohan Lal, Adv. (P-422/1993)
(33). Mr. Sanjay Kumar, Adv. (P-84 of 1997)
(34). Mr. Jagdish Saini, Adv. (P-1347/1991) appearing for Vishal Jangotra (accused No.4) and Sanji Ram (accused No.5)
(35). Ms. Sheeba Sethi, Adv. (1981/2018JK) appearing for Deepak Khajuria (accused No.1) and Anand Dutta (accused No.7).
(36) Mr. Vikramjit Rai, Adv. (P-2818/08) and
(37). Ms. R.D. Pandit, Adv (P-1592/1999) appearing for accused Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3)
(38). Ms. Mamta Bedi, Adv. (No. P-1727/1999) appearing for accused Parvesh Kumar (accused No.3)


1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Adarsh

    June 6, 2018 at 3:50 PM

    Mr. Sethi’s past has got nothing to do with this case. Bringing out his past only indicates a sick mind trying to work overtime for Mehbooba Mufti. I wish the very best to these 38 lawyers especially Mr. Ankur Sharma. May God help them to save innocent people becoming a scapegoat of Mehbooba’s dirty politics. Also, hope SC orders for a CBI probe so that real culprits could be arrested even if they are close to the CM. Also, her role in protecting the culprits and opposing CBI enquiry must be probed. Necessary provisions in article 370 must be made so that Mehbooba could be arrested and jailed once the conspiracy is proved in court.

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