Aarushi murder case; No fresh evidence to be presented: Ex CBI chief

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NEW DELHI: Former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) chief AP Singh on Friday welcomed the decision of the probe agency to challenge Rajesh and Nupur Talwar's acquittal in their daughter Aarushi murder case. Singh's statement comes a day after the CBI moved to apex court challenging the Talwar's acquittal in their daughter murder case.

 

Singh said that the court will only see evidence available in the past and no fresh evidence will presented.

"When lower court has convicted and High Court has acquitted, there is obviously some doubt in the result of investigation. Good that case is being referred to Supreme Court," Singh told ANI.

Nupur and Rajesh Talwar, the parents of Aarushi, were released from jail in October last year after the Allahabad High Court acquitted them of charges of their daughter's murder due to lack of evidence.

A special CBI Judge, S. Lal, had earlier held Rajesh and Nupur Talwar guilty of conspiracy and murder of Aarushi and domestic help Hemraj.

Aarushi murder case

The Noida double murder case refers to the unsolved murders of 13-year-old girl Aarushi Talwar and 45-year-old Hemraj Banjade, a live-in domestic worker, employed by her family in Noida, India. The two were killed on the night of 15–16 May 2008 at Aarushi's home. The case aroused public interest as a whodunit story, and received heavy media coverage.

When Aarushi's body was discovered on 16 May, the missing servant Hemraj was considered as the main suspect. However, the next day, his partially decomposed body was discovered on the terrace. The police were heavily criticized for failing to secure the crime scene immediately. After ruling out the family's ex-servants, the police considered Aarushi's parents Dr. Rajesh Talwar and Nupur Talwar as the prime suspects.

The police suspected that Rajesh had murdered the two after finding them in an "objectionable" position, or because Rajesh's alleged extra-marital affair had led to his blackmail by Hemraj and a confrontation with Aarushi. The accusations enraged the Talwars' family and friends, who accused the police of framing the Talwars in order to cover up the botched-up investigation.

The case was then transferred to the CBI, which exonerated the parents and suspected the Talwars' assistant Krishna Thadarai and two domestic servants—Rajkumar and Vijay Mandal. Based on the 'narco' interrogation conducted on the three men, the CBI suspected that they had killed Aarushi after an attempted sexual assault, and Hemraj for being a witness.

The CBI was accused of using dubious methods to extract a confession, and all the three men were released after it could not find any solid evidence against them.

In 2009, the CBI handed over the investigation to a new team, which recommended closing the case due to critical gaps in the evidence. Based on circumstantial evidence, it named Rajesh Talwar as the sole suspect, but refused to charge him due to lack of any hard evidence.

The parents opposed the closure, calling CBI's suspicion on Rajesh as baseless. Subsequently, a special CBI court rejected the CBI's claim that there was not enough evidence, and ordered proceedings against the Talwars.

In November 2013, the parents were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment, but many critics argued that the judgment was based on weak evidence. The Talwars challenged the decision in the Allahabad High Court, which acquitted them on 12 October 2017, calling the evidence against them unsatisfactory and giving them the benefit of the doubt.

 

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