The earlier investigation team, led by IG S Sreejith, had removed POCSO charges against the accused, a local BJP leader, which was initially mentioned by the local police.
The new SIT will be monitored by Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) EJ Jayaraj and the investigation will be led by Taliparamba Deputy Superintendent of Police TK Rathnakumar, reports Media One. According to reports, ADGP Jayaraj met the child’s family on Saturday.
The girl’s family had earlier moved the HC stating that they don’t have faith in the investigation led by IG S Sreejith. It was following this that the HC ordered the formation of a new investigation team, replacing all its members, including IG Sreejith.
In the case, the girl’s school teacher K Padmarajan, who is also a local BJP leader, is the accused. The girl had complained that the accused had sexually assaulted her multiple times in school. Though initially, the Kannur police had arrested the man under charges of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) and Indian Penal Code (IPC), but when the case was taken over by the Crime Branch team, headed by S Sreejith, the investigation report was filed in the case without POCSO charges. This had led the accused to come out on bail.
An audio clip alleged to be that of IG Sreejith had also surfaced, where the officer can be heard justifying the removal of POCSO charges and that the statement of the girl was contradictory. This had paved way for protests by activists and writers in Kerala, following which the family approached the court against the investigation team.
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