The medical report of an accused in the Kathua case who had claimed to be a juvenile has said that he is actually over 20 years old, PTI quoted a public prosecutor as saying. The Jammu and Kashmir crime branch submitted the report before the district and sessions court in Pathankot on Monday.

Judge Tajwinder Singh had directed the police to conduct a bone ossification test to ascertain the age of Parvesh Kumar, who is one of eight men accused of murdering and allegedly raping an eight-year-old girl in Kathua district in January. The court had ordered the test after the defence counsel moved an application in the first week of June, requesting that Kumar be treated as a minor. The counsel had cited Kumar’s matriculation certificate to back up his claim. The crime branch had constituted a team of doctors that examined him on June 22 and 23.

Meanwhile, the defence counsel on Monday also filed a separate application before the district and sessions court, claiming that the police allegedly tortured Kumar on June 23. The crime branch, however, denied the allegation and said it would contest it in court.

The Supreme Court on Monday asked three witnesses in the case to approach the Jammu and Kashmir High Court with their allegation that the special investigation team had harassed them. The witnesses – Sahil Sharma, Sachin Sharma and Neeraj Sharma – are friends of one of the key accused in the case.