On 6 April, 2013, at the age of 24, our beloved daughter, Sarah was murdered on a houseboat on Dal Lake, Kashmir. She had been mercilessly stabbed 46 times. The case received wide media publicity at the time.
Dutchman Richard de Wit was arrested immediately afterwards and charged with her murder, although it is far from clear that he is the guilty party.
The trial started almost 5 years ago, in June, 2013 and has been treated with absolute contempt. Out of the 110 scheduled hearings to date, 88 have made no progress. These have been thwarted by such reasons as non-appearance of witnesses, loss of key exhibits, lack of defence counsel, civil unrest and absence of the judge and other officials.
15 of the 46 listed witnesses have yet to be summoned and there is no end of the trial in sight.
This places an immense strain on Sarah's family and wide circle of friends, who desperately seek 'Justice for Sarah'. Not knowing what really happened or who is responsible compounds the heartbreak we all feel.
The proceedings are now being held in a second court, under the third judge, the fifth public prosecutor and the fifth defence counsel. The court papers are woefully inadequate.
Due to the unacceptably ineffective examination and cross-examination of the main witnesses, against whom there is an equal level of circumstantial evidence of association with the crime, neither side in the case will have any confidence in the eventual verdict, whichever way it goes.
Through this petition we are hoping to achieve three objectives:
Firstly: For the British Government to lodge a formal complaint to the Indian Government about the unacceptable manner in which the trial is being conducted.
Secondly: For the authorities in Kashmir to treat this trial with the respect it deserves. To date, it has never been afforded the priority it merits as a murder trial.
Thirdly: The re-call of all the main witnesses for cross-examination by a suitably qualified defence counsel.
Please help us by following the link below, signing the petition and sharing it with as many people as possible.
Learn more about the Justice for Sarah campaign here.