Jodhpur, March 27 (IANS) Seven accused in the case of missing nurse Bhanwari Devi, including sacked Rajasthan minister Mahipal Maderna and Congress legislator Malkhan Singh Bishnoi, were produced in a court here Tuesday after the case was committed to trial, a CBI lawyer said.
The court will hold regular hearings in the matter from April 2.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had Feb 29 filed a supplementary charge-sheet in the case naming Maderna as the mastermind behind the nurse's disappearance and subsequent murder.
"The case had been committed to trial after CBI filed the chargesheet. The seven of the accused were produced in the court of the special Scheduled Tribe/Scheduled Caste (SC/ST) cases today (Tuesday). The regular hearings in the case will be held from next month," said CBI lawyer S.S. Yadav.
The charge sheet filed by the CBI contained accounts of 300 witnesses and 313 documents in evidence.
The charge sheet claims that Indra Bishnoi, sister of Luni legislator Malkhan Singh, prompted the nurse to prepare a CD showing the nurse in a compromising position with Maderna.
"Malkhan Singh had not been given a ministerial birth in the cabinet in 2008 when the Congress came to power and that's why the CD was prepared which became the foundation of Bhanwari's kidnap and murder," it said.
The CBI has charge-sheeted Maderna, Malkhan Singh, and Malkhan Singh's brother Parasram Bishnoi as the key conspirators while nine others -- Sohan Lal, Shahabuddin and Baldev Jat alias Balia, Umesha Ram, Sahi Ram Bishnoi, Bishna Ram Bishnoi, Om Prakash Bishnoi, Kailash Jakhar and Ashok Bishnoi -- have been named the murderers. Bhanwari's husband Amarchand has also been booked for criminal conspiracy.
The CBI has kept investigation pending against Indra Bishnoi, who is on the run, and three others.
Most of the accused have been booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections for murder, kidnap, criminal conspiracy and causing disappearance of evidence.
The charge sheet says that Malkhan Singh through his sister had been instrumental in getting the nurse kidnapped and murdered.
As per the chargesheet, three men -- Shahabuddin, Sohan Lal and Baldev Jat alias Balia -- kidnapped Bhanwari from Bilara in Jodhpur rural on Sep 1, killed her and then handed over her body to a gang of criminals headed by Bishnaram who burnt the body to ashes and dumped her remains in a canal.
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