Kerala

HC seeks views of CBI, State

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The Kerala High Court on Friday sought the views of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the State government on a petition seeking a CBI probe into the custodial death of Sreejith.

When the petition, filed by his widow, came up for hearing, the judge orally indicated that it might not be proper for the police to investigate a case in which police personnel were involved.

In her petition, Akhila, widow of Sreejith, also sought a directive to the State government to award a compensation of ₹1 crore to Sreejith’s family on the grounds that it was a custodial death.

She pointed out that at the time of taking her husband into custody, and even when he was in the custody of the police, he was brutally assaulted and had sustained severe injuries, leading to his death on April 9.

Conspiracy alleged

The police took Sreejith and his brother Sajith into custody on April 6 from their house. She alleged that her husband was brutally murdered by the police, following a conspiracy hatched under the leadership of the then District Police Chief (Rural) A.V. George.

According to the petition, the medical report indicated that Sreejith died owing to assault on the abdomen. Despite registration of a crime under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) against four police officers and their arrest, the SIT had not initiated any action against the real conspirators — A.V. George, the then District Police Chief (Rural); Crispin Sam, suspended CI of police; and some other influential police officers.

The investigation now being conducted by the police against the officers would not yield any result.

‘No solatium yet’

Besides, the State government was bound to pay a compensation of ₹1 crore to his family. In fact, the State was yet to offer any amount as solatium to the bereaved family and this indicated that the State was washing their hands of the incident, the petitioner said.

Meanwhile, A.N. Radhakrishnan, State general secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party, on Friday filed a petition seeking to implead him in the case.

He said that if the present investigation team was allowed to continue with the probe, all the culprits would go scot-free.

He claimed that he had with him enough materials to link the higher officials and some Communist Party of India (Marxist) leaders with the custodial death.

The court posted the petition to May 4 for further hearing.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 10:48:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/hc-seeks-views-of-cbi-state/article23702227.ece

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