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Tanjavur Girl's Suicide: Madras High Court Orders Forensic Analysis Of Video Containing Her Statements

Sebin James
25 Jan 2022 2:51 AM GMT
Tanjavur Girls Suicide: Madras High Court Orders Forensic Analysis Of Video Containing Her Statements
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In a petition filed for transfer of investigation pertaining to the suicide of a 17-year-old girl to CB-CID, the Madurai bench of Madras High Court has ordered the forensic analysis of the viral video in which the deceased had allegedly spoken about the forced attempts of the school authorities to convert her to Christianity.However, the court opined that the confirmation by investigating...

In a petition filed for transfer of investigation pertaining to the suicide of a 17-year-old girl to CB-CID, the Madurai bench of Madras High Court has ordered the forensic analysis of the viral video in which the deceased had allegedly spoken about the forced attempts of the school authorities to convert her to Christianity.

However, the court opined that the confirmation by investigating officer about the voice of the deceased alone was not sufficient. Therefore, the court has directed the person who filmed the video to appear in person before the investigating officer on 25th January. At 10 am today(January 25), the said person named Muthuvel, as identified by the petitioner father, has been asked to hand over the original mobile phone containing the recorded video. The investigation officer will send the said mobile along with the Compact Disk for forensic analysis. The forensic analysis will be done by Tamil Nadu Forensic Science Lab, Mylapore, Chennai.

When the matter was taken up yesterday, Justice GR Swaminathan was informed that both the petitioner and his wife recorded their statements under Section 164 CrPC before the Judicial Magistrate, pursuant to the order issued by the high court on Saturday. The High Court was also able to confirm that the recorded statements were handed over to the current investigation officer. Perusing the statements made, the court inferred that both of them iterate about the attempts made to convert the petitioner's girl child to Christianity.

The petitioner was also present via VC during the court proceedings today. Both the petitioner and his wife has also been asked to appear before the investigation tomorrow at 10 am.

The court has given a non-flexible timeline to complete all the above procedures and appearances. The court has asked the Forensics Lab to submit the report through investigation officer's special messenger by 5 pm on 27th January. The Regional Forensic Science Lab, Thanjavur has been asked to submit the viscera report and other reports to the officer by 4pm on 27th January.  By 27th January, the investigation officer would also be receiving the final post mortem report with opinions by virtue of the court order today.

The court has also allowed the officer time till tomorrow to decide whether an alteration report should be filed based on the Section 164 CrPC statements made by the petitioner and his wife.

The matter has been listed for further order at 4 pm on 28th January.

Background

In a special sitting on Saturday, the court had directed the police not to interfere while the family performs the final rites of the child as per their customs. Since there has been no doubt as to the credibility of postmortem conducted by doctors from Thanjavur Medical College, the bench asked the District Collector to make necessary arrangements to transfer the body to the deceased child's native place.

Pertinently, the court also gave a strict mandate to the police not to harass the person who filmed the video of the girl child. Instead, the court asked the officers to focus on the circumstances that led to her suicide.

The deceased, a 12th Standard student in Thooya Irudhaya Higher Secondary School at Thirukattupalli, was staying at the School Hostel when the incident occured. Allegedly, she consumed poison (pesticide) inside the hostel premises on 9th January. The police took her statement on 16th January, based on which, the hostel warden was booked for offences under Sections 305, 511 of IPC and Sections 75 and 82(1) of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015. 

Advocate M.Karthikeya Venkitachalapathy appeared for the petitioners and T.Senthil Kumar, Additional Public Prosecutor appeared on behalf of the Respondents.

Case Title: Muruganantham v. The Director-General of Police & Ors.

Case No: CRL OP(MD) No.1344 of 2022

Click Here To Read/ Download Order


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