Every crime and more particularly heinous ones like Murder and Rape must be meticulously investigated by apprehending the right accused. An offence of murder under 302 of IPC– requires an act to have been committed with an intention. For an act you need to have actors and then intention.  

Even framing of charge is always on grave suspicion and not on mere suspicion. In that 2017 Campal Parade ground murder, leave alone grave suspicion, there was not even mere suspicion and worst still not even a prima facie case had been made out. Infact while releasing the accused on bail the High Court had observed that on perusal of the entire charge sheet there was prime facie no evidence linking the accused to the alleged murder. In the entire trial there was no witness who attributed an act to any of the accused and so also there was no circumstantial evidence which linked the accused to this crime. Even otherwise circumstantial evidence requires a chain to be complete, to rule out any possibility of doubt of any other person being involved.

Such a sad and shabby manner of investigation to merely create headlines that a case has been cracked is deplorable especially when you implicate innocent souls and label them as criminals which causes a lifelong scar which can never be erased. Often such conduct by the police leads to convert innocent citizens into criminals. Nobody has the right to play Russian roulette with people’s lives. Had the Police in this case not acted in haste by fooling the public and themselves, perhaps they may have carried out a proper investigation, identified the real accused and prosecuted them in accordance with the law.Whether it was over enthusiasm or pressure driven connivance with the police – only God knows.

Perhaps the real criminals in this case are still roaming the streets and having their last laugh at this shoddy investigation and perhaps may be striking elsewhere with impunity. Was this agonizing four and half year long trial over 84 hearings a criminal waste of precious judicial time? Furthermore, this type of waste of police and the court’s time and valuable financial resources which we can ill afford only serves to undermine faith in the law enforcement agencies and legal process in our State. The people of Goa are then right to ask the question ‘Do the Police lack investigative skills, or do they easily succumb to external pressures and interference in the law enforcement process for all the wrong reasons?

Blake Edwards a famous American film director observed ‘Nothing matters but the facts. Without them, the science of criminal investigation is nothing more than a guessing game’.

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