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Sex-scandal returns to haunt Kashmir

Srinagar, October 08, 2007:

A court in Indian administered Kashmir has ordered the premier investigation agency of India, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to submit detailed evidences against some high profile people allegedly involved in the infamous sex scandal in Kashmir.

The people named by the Court include two state ministers, Hakim Mohammad Yaseen, and Ghulam Hassan Khan, legislators, senior police officers and former chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Bank M Y Khan.

The ruling ally People Democratic Party suspended its legislator Ghulam Hassan Khan after his name Monday figured in the case.

The other accused are Congress MLA Yogesh Sawhney, Niyaz Mehmood, deputy inspector general (DIG) of police; Ashkoor Wani and Sheikh Mehmood (both senior superintendents of police; Sheikh Nisar Ahmad and Manzoor Naik are also said to be involved.

The division bench has directed CBI to conduct speedy and focused investigations in the cases of Mohammed Yousuf Khan, former chairman of the J&K Bank Ltd, Rajendra Tickoo, the then vigilance commissioner and Zahoor Ahmad Malik, whose names too have figured in the investigation report produced by the CBI before the court.

Last year 18 people including former ministers Ghulam Ahmad Mir of the Congress and Raman Mattoo, senior IAS officer Iqbal Khanday, DIG BSF K.C. Padhi, two DSPs of state police and the alleged kingpin of the scandal Sabeena were arrested in connection with the case earlier. They were later released on bail and are facing trial at a Chandigarh court.

The court decision created a furore in Valley and civil secretariat in Srinagar as the mater came alive again after a lull of more than a year and a half.

The state High Court which pulled up the CBI for the shortcomings in its inquiry, asked it to furnish all the evidence against the accused before Chief Judical Magistrate, Srinagar within six week’s time.

The court observed that no efforts have been made by the investigation agency to locate and get hold of the retired SP Jitnder Misri, conduct of former Additional Advocate General Anil Sethi and one Vijay – against whom allegations of rape were leveled by Gulshan alias Gypsy at the residence of the then minister Raman Mattoo.

The court further observed that no efforts have been made by CBI to trace out persons like Chain Singh associated with Municipal Councilor Manju, and identification of ‘Gora Chitta commissioner', who allegedly had sex with minor Yasmeen in an official hut at Chesma Shahi.

It also directed CBI to establish the identity of the ‘Gora Chitta’ Commissioner and conduct lawful interrogation of Sabeena, DySP M Y Mirza, Shazia Azra and Muzaffer Handoo along with the councilor Manju.

The director general of police has been asked to constitute a team of police officers of 'proven integrity' to be headed by a DIG to probe cases of sex trade and drug trafficking in Kashmir, besides providing security to people whose names have appeared in the court order.

The court also desired the rehabilitation of the affected girls who were involved in the racket.

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