Pradyuman murder case
In picture: People participate in a candle light vigil on September 11, 2017, over death of 7-year-old Pradyuman who was found dead by a school staff in Ryan international School's washroom with his throat slit.IANS

The Haryana Police is in the dock once again because many perceive that its negligence led to the terrible mix up in the sensational Ryan murder case.

For the uninitiated, the cops are accused of ignoring CCTV evidence that could have blown the case wide open right in its initial days. And then, the investigators are accused of planting evidence to frame bus conductor Ashok Kumar!

The allegations come just months after the Haryana Police were accused of not acting on credible intelligence and letting Dera Sacha Sauda followers run amok following the conviction of their leader Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in two rape cases.

The case

Seven-year-old Pradyuman Singh was found dead by a senior student in a washroom at the Gurugram branch of Ryan International School on September 8. 

The Haryana Police, under immense pressure, arrested school bus conductor Ashok Kumar under suspicion that he had sexually assaulted the boy and then slit his throat. They also said that he had killed the boy with a knife from his kit, and that he even confessed to the crime!

[Representational image]Creative Commons

However, Pradyuman's kin continued to protest, claiming that the real culprit was still at large. The case was handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on September 22.

The CBI on Wednesday, November 8, said it had detained a Class XI student for the murder of Pradyuman. What shocked everyone was the motive: The older student apparently wanted the examinations and the parent-teacher meeting postponed!

Planted evidence?

Following these revelations, the Haryana Police is accused of ruining the life of bus conductor Ashok Kumar. What has now emerged is that the police may have planted a knife in order to implicate Kumar in the case. They were reportedly looking to build a case of sexual assault and murder against him. 

In fact, even Pradyuman's father Varun Thakur was confident that Kumar had nothing to do with his son's murder. "We never believed the conductor was the killer...the sexual assault theory didn't fit the time-frame. Our trust is restored in the investigation," he has been quoted as saying. 

And despite all this, Kumar will continue to be in prison because he is still being treated as a suspect. 

CCTV camera
[Representational image]Creative Commons

Ignored CCTV footage

What seems to be even more aggravating is that the case could have been cracked right in its initial days had the Haryana Police concentrated on some key CCTV footage that featured both Pradyuman and the Class XI student accused of slitting his throat. 

At least one part of the video shows the older student exiting the washroom, followed by Pradyuman, who is by then holding his throat, which had been slit at that point. 

The CBI said the full footage showed at least three others — two students and Ashok Kumar. However, it was only after repeatedly questioning all of them that the CBI zeroed in on the older student. 

Many on social media are now of the opinion that had the Haryana Police concentrated on this key bit of evidence that the CBI pored over, the case could have been solved much earlier.