September 28, 2020

Navruna accused taken on remand

Patna: The special CBI court in Muzaffarpur on Saturday allowed the agency to take the six persons, accused in the disappearance and murder of 13-year-old Navruna Chakravarty in September 2012, on a three-day remand for questioning.

The order came a day after the court heard the argument of the CBI special public prosecutor. The accused will be taken on remand on Sunday.

The court, headed by Rajiv Ranjan, heard the petition filed on behalf of the case’s investigating officer. It directed the CBI to follow all the procedures before taking the accused on remand, and also allowed the accused to meet their legal counsel for an hour daily during remand.

Two of the six accused – Abhay Kumar Gupta and Vikrant, alias Vikku Shukla – also filed their bail petitions in the court on Saturday. The court is yet to take cognisance of the bail petitions.

The other accused are former Muzaffarpur district board vice-chairman Shah Alam Shabbu, builder Brajesh Singh, marble businessman Vineet Agrawal and Navruna’s neighbour Rakesh Kumar.

Navruna, then 13 years old and a student of Class VII at St Xavier’s School in Muzaffarpur, disappeared from her house on Jawaharlal Road in Muzaffarpur on September 18, 2012. It was almost three weeks after her father, Atulya Chakravarty, had reached an agreement to dispose of his property at a prime location in the north Bihar town.

Atulya, a former employee of a pharmaceuticals company, had alleged that his daughter’s murder was the handiwork of the local land mafia and politicians because he refused to sell off his property worth Rs 4 crore.

Preliminary investigations by the district police and CID indicated elopement, but the case took a U-turn when a skeleton was recovered from a drain adjacent to Atulya’s two-storeyed building a month after Navruna went missing.

Though the government recommended a CBI probe on the request of Navruna’s parents, the CBI took up the investigation after the intervention of the Supreme Court in February 2014. The apex court is monitoring the investigation into the case.

The CBI’s first arrest in the case on September 5, 2017 was ward councillor Rakesh Kumar Sinha Pappu. The agency, however, didn’t file a chargesheet against Pappu, which led to his release on bail. Last week, the CBI summoned the six accused for questioning at the Patna office and later took them into custody.

Courtesy: The Telegraph

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