Jesna missing case: CBI says ready for further probe

Thiruvananthapuram: The Central Bureau of Investigation here on Tuesday agreed to carry out further probe into the 2018 Jesna missing case. The central agency informed its stance to the Chief Judicial Magistrate court during the hearing of a plea submitted by Jesna's father James Joseph. The court asked the petitioner to submit evidence to prove his allegations in a sealed cover before it as demanded by the CBI counsel. The court adjourned further hearing into the plea to May 3.

In the petition, Jesna's father cited lapses of CBI in the probe and alleged that it concluded the probe without examining every angle in the case. He argued that he had obtained new evidence related to the case and asked the CBI to carry out the probe for the next six months. He approached the court with the petition after CBI concluded its investigation citing lack of any substantial evidence in the case. 

Following this, Jesna's father came forward citing lapses in the CBI probe. He argued that Jesna had excessive bleeding a few days before she went missing and Crime Branch had taken her blood-stained clothes as part of the probe. But neither the Crime Branch nor CBI investigated this matter, he claimed. Meanwhile, CBI rubbished this allegation and argued that local police and CBI never collected Jesna's blood-stained clothes. 

James Joseph also cited that the CBI ignored the probe into Jesna's secret prayer place and the source of Rs 60,000 in her wallet. The petition also noted that CBI deliberately avoided interrogation of Jesna's friends. 

The case
Jesna Maria James (21), the youngest among the three children of Fancy and James Joseph went missing on March 22, 2018, from Kanjirappally. She was a B.Com student at St. Dominic College in Kanjirappally. She left her house at Kollamula on March 22, 2018, around 9 am and was reportedly heading to the house of a relative at Punchavayal in Mundakayam. From Kollamula, she took an autorickshaw and later boarded a bus to Erumeli. From the Erumeli bus stand, she took a bus to Mundakayam.

She spoke to her fellow passengers en route to Mundakkayam. Though the probe team reached Chennai in search of Jesna there was no headway. There has been no trace of Jesna ever since. Jesna's relatives alleged that the police began a proper investigation only after two weeks of receiving the complaint. CBI took over a probe into the case in February 2021 following a High Court order. The central agency issued yellow notices through Interpol in 191 countries to trace the girl. Though it was rumoured that Jesna headed to Syria and joined ISIS, CBI ruled out the involvement of terror outfits in the case.

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