The fire that killed two Dalit children in Haryana's Sunped village, was allegedly started from inside, the state's forensic experts have said, according to reports.
The "origin and source of fire was from inside the room and not from outside", the Indian Express reported, quoting forensic experts. Earlier, it was reported that on October 20, alleged upper caste men set the house of Jitender on fire after pouring petrol from the window.
Jitendra's two-and-a-half-years-old son Vaibhav and 11-month-old daughter Divya perished in the fire while his wife Rekha, 28, is still fighting for her life at Delhi's Safdarjung Hospital.
The findings by the team comprising the Director, Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) and Assistant Directors of the Physics and Chemistry divisions of the FSL, Karnal, directly contradicts the statement of Jitender who claimed that the fire was started by upper caste men. The team is expected to submit their report to the CBI by the weekend, Express reported.
The Express report said there were "no traces of outside entry", the "pattern of pouring of inflammable substance was vertical" and the "splatter’s pattern on the scene of crime was circular", suggesting that the fuel was not thrown from a distance, but poured from inside the house.
The CBI has taken over the probe after re-registering an FIR under IPC sections, including those related to murder, arson and rioting, against 11 persons of whom six are under judicial custody and five absconding, PTI reported.
"The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case U/s 147, 149, 452, 436, 302, 307 of IPC & Section 3 of SC/ST Act against 11 accused persons and taken over the investigation of the FIR No.325/2015 registered on 20.10.2015 at Police Station Sadar, Ballabhgarh, District Faridabad," CBI spokeserson Devpreet Singh said.
She said a CBI team, headed by a DIG-level officer and including officials of Central Forensic Science Laboratory, visited the crime scene today and collected some exhibits for in-depth investigation, besides taking over the case records from local police.
The local police had registered a case against Sunped residents Balwant and his son Dharm Singh, besides nine others including Jagat, Aidal, Naunihal, Joginder, Sooraj, Akash, Aman, Sanjay, and Desh Raj. Jagat, Aidal, Naunihal, Joginder and Deshraj are still absconding.
A Special Investigating Team was constituted by the district administration under DCP PC Pawar to probe the incident, but Haryana government recommended a CBI inquiry as outrage mounted. A 15-member CBI team visited Sunped village in Faridabad this afternoon. The team was led Uttam Chandra Datta, a DIG rank officer.
The team was also accompanied by a group of experts in Forensic Science. The probe team not only interacted with Jitender and his family members at home but also tried to recreate the scene on the day of incident, sources said. The team of experts searched for evidence in and around the house as well as the terrace.
It also studied in detail the wall which was scaled by the accused to jump inside the house before putting the family on fire. The CBI team left the site at around 4 PM and has taken with them the samples they found in the house. The CBI officials remained tight-lipped and did not share their findings with the media.
They also went through the streets of the village, probably to get a feel of what the other villagers think about the incident.
Meanwhile, Akhil Bhartiya Kshatriya Yuva Mahasabha today submitted a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner Faridabad Amit Kumar Agrawal and Police Commissioner Faridabad Subhash Yadav demanding release of all the 11 people named in FIR on bail.
The memorandum was addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and Minister of State for Home at the Centre. (With PTI inputs)
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