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Bengal court asks CBI to probe rape-murder in asylum

Posted on Feb 18, 09:04PM | IANS

Kolkata, Feb 18 : The Calcutta High Court Monday directed the CBI to probe the rape and murder of a mentally deranged woman whose body was earlier exhumed from inside a mental asylum in West Bengal's Hooghly district.

The order on a public interest litigation (PIL) was issued by the division bench of Chief Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Joymalya Bagchi, who directed the state police's Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to hand over the case related documents to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The body of Gudiya, a 32-year-old mentally deranged woman, was exhumed from the premises of a residential home for destitute and mentally challenged women July 11, 2012, amidst allegations that she was tortured, raped and killed. She went missing from the home since June 26.

The CID took over the investigations on July 15, following which bodies of two other inmates of the home were also dug out from the adjoining Burdwan district.

The court has also ordered compensation payable to the family members of the three inmates. The matter will come up for hearing after four weeks.

In the wake of the court's order, political parties accused the Trinamool Congress government of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of influencing the investigating agency.

"The state government should be ashamed how the administration is using the CID for political purposes to lodge false cases and slow down investigations in cases where it is necessary," Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Mohammad Salim said.

State Congress president Pradip Bhattacharya said the high court directive is embarrassing for the state government that is trying to influence the CID.

Welcoming the court's directive, he said it is necessary to bring out the truth in this matter.