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The Himachal Pradesh High Court today expressed displeasure over the slow progress of probe into the Kotkhai rape case, and related custodial death case, and asked the CBI to complete the investigations in two weeks and submit the final report by October 25. A division bench of acting Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice Sandeep Sharma heard the arguments of the CBI and perused the fifth status report submitted by the agency. The bench said the status report is clueless and asked as to what the CBI had done in past three months and if it will it take it six months to conclude the probe. The probe agency counsel Anshul Bansal said that reports of scientific and forensic evidence would be presented in the court during the next hearing. A minor girl had gone missing on July 4 and her body was recovered from the Halaila forests in Kotkhai two days later.
A case of rape and murder was registered after the postmortem. The issue evoked massive protests and the DGP constituted an SIT to probe the case. In the meantime, one of the accused, Suraj, died in the custody at the Kotkhai police station on July 18. The case was referred to the CBI following high court orders on July 19 and the CBI has submitted five status report so far. The CBI has also arrested ZH Zaidi (IG) and seven other police personnel in custodial death case on August 29. They are still in judicial custody.
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