CBI asked to continue probing Abhaya murder case

January 6th, 2009 - 6:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Kochi, Jan 6 (IANS) The Kerala High Court Tuesday asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team investigating the 1992 murder of Sister Abhaya to continue with the probe. A single bench of Justice R. Basanth said that the final decision would be taken Thursday on whether a division bench should hear the case.

His observations come after the CBI filed a clarification petition on the manner in which Justice K. Hema had on Jan 1 made some remarks on the present CBI team and wanted a higher official to take over the case. She had granted bail to the three accused in the murder.

The body of Sister Abhaya, a resident of Pius X Hostel, was found in the well of the Kottayam convent March 27, 1992.

The three accused - two priests Jose Putarika and Thomas M.Kottor and Sister Seffi - were arrested Nov 19 by the CBI team - the 13th after 12 earlier teams failed to crack the case.

Putarika is a former Malayalam professor at the Kottayam college where Abhaya studied, Kottor is the Diocesan chancellor of the Catholic Church at Kottayam and Sister Seffi was a resident of the convent when the incident took place.

The Ernakulam chief judicial magistrate court had given the sentence and the three accused had approached the high court seeking bail.

The CBI submitted that the investigation had practically come to a standstill for two days after the verdict in the bail petition.

Basanth remarked that as an ordinary citizen he was also keen to know the truth in the case and said the CBI could not suspend the investigation as it was statutorily bound to continue it.

The new confusion rose when it was pointed out before the court that there were two conflicting observations by two single judges on the authenticity of the compact disc of a narco-analysis test done at the Bangalore Forensic Laboratory conducted on the accused.

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