The Kerala High Court, on Friday, ordered the Crime Branch of the Kerala Police to hand over the Jesna missing case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) as they had made little headway with the case. The Thiruvananthapuram Unit of The CBI will be handling the case.
The Kerala High Court delivered its order based on a petition filed by Jesna’s brother Jaice John and Kerala Students Union leader KM Abhijith. When the matter came up today, CBI informed the court that it was ready to probe the case. The probe agency said it suspects the case of having inter-state links.
The court has directed the state government to provide adequate infrastructural facilities to CBI. The court has also asked the police to handover the case diary and related materials to the CBI.
Jesna Maria James, a native of Pathnamthitta district went missing on March 2018. A second BCom student at St Dominic’s College, Kanjirapally, went missing from her home in Vechoochira, near Erumeli in Pathanamthitta district on March 22, 2018. Jesna’s mother, Sancy had passed away in 2017. She was residing with her father and elder brother. While her brother, an engineering student, had gone to college on the day Jesna went missing, her father was away at work.
Jesna went missing while she was on her way from her house in Pathanamthitta district, to her aunt's house near Mundakayam in Kottayam. While CCTV visuals showed Jesna boarding a bus from Erumeli to Mundakkayam and also showed her traveling in the bus, the police could not verify what happened to her after she boarded the bus. Though a Special Investigation Team was formed to probe the disappearance and they had travelled to many states based on various leads, Jesna was never found.
A few months after her disappearance, the charred body of a young woman found in Chennai was suspected to be that of Jesna’s. A DNA probe confirmed otherwise, however. The police who had announced a cash award to anyone providing information about Jesna, received several tip-offs, however none of them proved worthwhile.
During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that Jesna had made several calls to a friend and her last text message to him before she disappeared was that she was going to die. However, nothing substantial was found after questioning the friend.