The Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court on Thursday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to respond within eight weeks with a detailed counter affidavit on the control exercised by it over the various investigative agencies in the State.

The Bench of Chief Justice Shiv Kirti Singh and Justice D.K. Arora passed the order on a Public Interest Litigation petition filed by Lucknow-based social activist Nutan Thakur and her husband IPS officer Amitabh Thakur.

The court has said the State shall indicate in its response specifically about that part of the petition that prays that premier investigative agencies of the State be allowed to file their charge sheet directly to the Court as against the present system of seeking permission from the State government.

Mr. Thakur, appearing in court, argued that the agencies, including Vigilance Establishment, Crime Branch-Criminal Investigation Department, Economic Offences Wing (EOW), SIB Cooperative and Anti-Corruption Organisation conduct probes as per the Criminal Procedure Code, where complete responsibility and powers were vested with the investigating officer and his superior police officers.

However, in Uttar Pradesh, the Vigilance Establishment submits its inquiry report to the Vigilance Department and the other agencies to the Home Department of the State government, which takes the final decision.

Additional Advocate General Bulbul Godiyal said the Director General, EOW, had already sent a proposal in December 2012 to be allowed to file its report directly to the court. The proposals were under the active consideration of the government, which would positively look into the facts presented by the petitioners.

The petition said it was expected that the enquiry officer would present the facts directly to the court and not send its reports to the government for approval.

This would drastically reduce the possibilities of external influences.