In a significant development to the rape and murder case of Andhra pharmacy student Ayesha Meera, the High Court ordered the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to investigate the crime, on Thursday. The HC has asked the CBI to file fresh FIR and begin the re-investigating the case.
When Ayesha was raped and murdered at her hostel in Vijayawada on December 27, 2007, the horrific incident shook the state. The case was later handed over to the Special Investigation Team (SIT), which was headed by an Inspector General-ranked police official.
In October, the SIT informed the Hyderabad High Court that the records of the case were destroyed in the trial court. Taking a serious note of this, the court asked the Registrar General to conduct a probe into the destruction of the records and submit a report within four weeks.
The court took the decision to order the CBI investigation based on the petition by Ayeshaâ€™s parents. They had earlier stated before the court that that the evidence was destroyed in the trial court in Vijayawada when the appeal against the verdict of the trial court was being heard in the High Court.
Expressing dissatisfaction over staff at the Vijayawada Court, HC has also asked the police to file cases against the staff who were responsible for 'destruction' of records.
Ayesha was raped and murdered 11 years ago, and her body was found outside the toilet on the second floor of the Sri Durga Ladies Hostel in Ibrahimpatnam. In 2008, police accused Satyam Babu, who had been arrested in a cell phone robbery, of confessing to the murder.
But Ayeshaâ€™s parents had alleged that Satyam Babu was merely a misdirection in the investigation and a relative of former Deputy Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Koneru Ranga Rao was involved in the crime.
Though Satyam Babu was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in 2010 by the Mahila Court in Vijayawada, the Hyderabad HC acquitted Satyam Babu last year.