Abhaya Case: Kerala HC questions to CBI

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Kochi, Aug 5 (UNI) The Kerala High Court today directed the Investigating Officer (IO) of the CBI in the Sister Abhaya Murder Case to appear before it on August 12 and explain why the final report in the matter was being delayed.

Mr Justice V Ramakumar, who yesterday observed the CD of the narco-analysis test conducted by the CBI in connection with the case appeared to be tampered with, today ordered the Forensic Sciences Laboratory (FSL), Bangalore, to directly submit the original CDs to the High Court Registrar General before August 12.

The court added the FSL Director shall not allow any person, including the CBI, to have access to their system.

''The CDs shall not be forwarded to the court through the CBI.

Utmost confidentiality shall be maintained, both in the process of downloading onto the CDs as well as forwarding the same to the Registrar General,'' the court said.

On viewing the CD made available to the court by the CBI, there appeared some suspicion as to whether the CD revealed the complete proecss of the narco-analysis examination, conducted on two priests-- Father Jose Puthrikae and Father Thomas Kottur and Sr Sephy-- last year.

Directing the IO in the case to appear before it on August 12, the court said a brief written report should also be given regarding the investigation conducted by the CBI after the receipt of the narco-analysis report and explain why the final report in the matter was being delayed.

Posing a list of questions to be replied by the IO, the court asked ''are you sure the original CDs forwarded to CBI by the FSL, Bangalore along with the narco-analysis report have not been tampered while in the custody of the CBI and whether it contained the full details of the examination?'' The body of 21-year-old Sister Abhaya was found in the well of St Pius X Convent in Kottayam on March 27, 1992. As per the forensic reports, she was sexually assaulted before her death.

(Eds: Here pick up from Para 3 of MS7) UNI XR ARC RL DS1613

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