This Article is From Jul 11, 2009

Shopian case: Mattoo for central probe

Shopian case: Mattoo for central probe
Srinagar:

The Baramulla protests come on the heels of the murder and rape of two women in Shopian. That incident and the subsequent cover up had also shaken the Valley with protests.

Chaman Lal Matoo had carried out a campaign after his daughter was raped and murdered in Delhi 13 years ago. He's brought the lessons he learnt from that campaign to the Valley.

The rape and murder of two young women in Shopian is something this Kashmiri pandit can relate to. His daughter Priyadarshini, a Delhi University law student was raped and killed 13 years ago.

It took Mattoo over a decade to get justice, a case that sparked a huge public outcry after a lower court let off the accused due to shoddy police investigation.

In the Shopian case, the initial probe report points fingers at the police.

"In our case, the investigation at the very start was so shoddy and part of it was botched by Delhi Police, it was later on handed over to CBI who acted sincerely and honestly and the culprit in that case was sent to gallows. Such a heinous crime can only be investigated by a party and an agency that is above board," said CL Mattoo, father of Priyadarshini Mattoo.

Statements by the man who left the Valley nearly two decades ago have been welcomed in Shopian.

"It is a human issue and not a religious issue. We Kashmiris have to fight for justice," said Muhammad Iqbal, resident Shopian.

Even the Jan commission in its interim report has raised the finger of suspicion towards police, so Mattoo demands that a central agency should investigate the Shopian rape and murder case to make it more transparent.

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