Srinagar: Four suspended cops were arrested on Wednesday evening after the Jammu and Kashmir High Court so ordered and asked police to profile their DNA for their alleged involvement in the "heinous crime of rape followed by murder" of two south Kashmir women on May 30.
A division bench of Chief Justice Barin Ghosh and Justice Mohammed Yaqoob Mir directed the special investigation team (SIT) to "arrest and produce" the accused police officers before the court.
Soon after the court order, Javed Iqbal Mattoo, then superintendent of police Shopian, Rohit Baskotra his deputy, inspector Shafeeq Ahmed and station house officer Qazi Abul Kareem were arrested in the evening. They have been accused of destroying crucial evidence in the case.
OUTRAGE: The police had initially tried to passed off the deaths as accidental drowning.
The SIT, headed by Inspector General of Police Farooq Ahmad, has been asked "to collect their blood samples for their DNA profiling".
The blood samples should "be sealed by the registrar (judicial) and immediately sent to the central forensic laboratory New Delhi for the purpose of preparing DNA profiles", the court said.
The bench said any bail application filed by the accused should be transferred to the high court for a decision.
A narco-analysis of the accused officers should be done at the forensic science laboratory in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, the court said. There are no facilities for carrying out the test in Kashmir.
The court expressed satisfaction over the investigations by the SIT in the rape and murder of pregnant Nilofar Jan 22, and her sister-in-law Asiya Jan, 17, who were found dead off a stream in Shopian town May 30.
The incident triggered valley-wide protests and the south Kashmir town has been observing shutdown since then.
The court appealed to the people of Shopian to call off the strike that has been on for the last 48 days.
"We assure them that as the people of the state are behind them so is this court and it would be our collective effort to ultimately solve the crime and appropriately deal with the perpetrator(s) of the heinous crime of rape followed by murder," the court order said.