‘Tell us one good reason…’: Delhi HC quashes plea for CBI probe in Shraddha Walkar murder case

The Indian Express | 2 weeks ago | 22-11-2022 | 02:45 pm

‘Tell us one good reason…’: Delhi HC quashes plea for CBI probe in Shraddha Walkar murder case

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed with costs a public interest litigation seeking that the Shraddha Walkar murder case investigation be transferred from the Delhi Police to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).Appearing for the litigant, practising advocate Joshini Tuli, advocate Joginder Tuli submitted before a division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad that the Delhi Police is “going left and right” to collect the evidence and the probe was not being conducted in a proper manner.“Tell us one good reason for transferring the matter…Parents don’t have any grievance. You are a stranger,” Chief Justice Sharma said.During the course of the arguments, Santosh Kumar Tripathi, appearing for the state of Delhi, said that the plea should be dismissed with costs as baseless allegations had been levelled against the police. Sanjay Lao, appearing for Delhi Police, concurred, saying “so many comments have been levelled against the Delhi Police” without any basis.When advocate Joginder said that if a narco analysis test and polygraph test were conducted, the police should inform the court, the bench said that the court is not a monitoring agency. Lao submitted that around 200 police personnel were investigating the case, senior police officials were involved and “ around 80% of the investigation” was completed.The Union of India, represented by Additional Solicitor General Chetan Sharma, submitted that the petitioner cannot dictate before the court “what can be done, what should be done”.After Joginder said that “nothing will happen in this case and the accused will be acquitted”, Chief Justice Sharma said, “You are judge..” Justice Prasad remarked that the litigant was nothing but “a meddlesome interloper” and that the “police is doing its own investigation”.Thereafter, the high court dismissed the petition with costs.Joshini said she moved the plea after witnessing the proceedings before a Delhi court on November 17 wherein the Delhi Police was allowed to conduct a narco analysis test on Aaftab Poonawala, 28, who has been accused of killing his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar.The PIL says that Joshini wrote to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs and CBI on November 18 requesting for the transfer of investigation from the Delhi Police “due to the sensitive nature of the case and the hampering of investigation and tampering of witnesses and evidences of the present case by the Delhi Police/ Respondent No.1 and Respondent No.4”.According to the plea, “minute and sensitive details of the investigation” by the Delhi Police have so far been revealed to the “public through the media”. The petition contends that the presence of media and other public persons at the “place of recoveries, court hearings etc.” of any accused amounts to interference with the evidence and witnesses in the case.The plea also claims that the alleged place of the crime has not been sealed by the Delhi Police to date which is continuously being accessed by the people and media personnel and has been contaminated. It further states that the case is an interstate offence beyond the territorial jurisdiction of the Delhi Police because they have disclosed to the media they are going to take Poonawala to five different states, including Himachal Pradesh and Maharashtra, for further investigation.The plea also alleges that the forensic evidence in the case has not been preserved properly by the Delhi Police since all the alleged recoveries are being touched and accessed by different public persons and media personnel within the Mehrauli police station, alleged scene of crime i.e. house of the deceased, place of recoveries i.e. Mehrauli, Chhattarpur forest etc. which is evident in the news coverage of the present case.The plea further alleges that the leaking of evidence and material witnesses to the media and public persons has led to the conduct of a media trial wherein the media and public are already “demanding hanging of the accused Aftab Poonawalla without a trial which is a right guaranteed under the Indian Constitution and Indian Laws”.Poonawala has been accused of chopping the body of Walkar, 27, into more than 30 parts after a fight in May this year and disposing of them over two-three months. The Delhi Police has booked him under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).————The Delhi HC on Tuesday dismissed with costs a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking the transfer of investigation in the Shraddha Walkar murder case from the Delhi Police to CBI.A division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad asked advocate Joginder Tuli, who was appearing for the petitioner: “Tell us one good reason for transferring the matter…Parents don’t have any grievance. You are a stranger”.Tuli contended that the probe was not being conducted in a proper manner. Santosh Tripathi, who was appearing for the state of Delhi, said that plea should be dismissed with costs as baseless allegations had been levelled against the police. Sanjay Lao, appearing for the Delhi police, said that “so many comments have been levelled against the Delhi Police” without any basis.Tuli said that if the results of a Narco test and polygraph test should be submitted to the court, if it is conducted. “What they have done so far they should tell the court,” Tuli said.The bench said that the court is not a monitoring agency. Lao submitted that around 200 police personnel were investigating the case, adding that the Additional CP and the ACP Cyber Cell are also involved. “Around 80 per cent of the investigation is complete”

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The Indian Express | 2 hours ago | 08-12-2022 | 11:45 am
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Two employees of the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (MSEDCL) were assaulted on December 5 after they cut the power connection to some houses in the Kondhwa area of Pune for non-payment of bills, police said. Police have booked four persons who also threatened to kill the officials.A First Information Report in the case has been registered based on the complaint of Shankar Rondhe, 32, a senior MSEDCL technician with the Kondhwa branch.According to police, the incident took place last Monday near Hajra Complex area in Kondhwa, when Rondhe and his colleague Siddharth Chavan had gone to recover long-pending power bills of consumers in Mithanagar, Bhagyoday Nagar, and Hajra Complex areas.“Around 11 am, Rondhe and Chavan cut the power supply to four houses and removed their electric meters as part of punitive action. When they were returning to their office to submit the meters, they were intercepted by four persons from the Hajra Complex building. The suspects punched and kicked Rondhe for snapping their power supply. They also hit Chavan as he tried to intervene,” said an officer.According to the complaint, the suspects also threatened to kill them if they came to their area again and snatched the power meters they had confiscated.Rondhe and Chavan approached the Kondhwa police after receiving basic treatment at Sassoon General Hospital in Pune. “Based on the initial investigation, a case has been registered against Afzal Kadar Kapadia, Asif Kadar Kapadia, Mohammed Afzal Kapadia, and one more person,” said an officer from Kondhwa police station.Police have invoked various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) pertaining to assault on public servants, voluntarily causing hurt to public servants and criminal intimidation among others. Police are yet to make arrests in the case.

Pune: Two MSEDCL employees beaten up for cutting power connection to houses
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The Indian Express | 2 hours ago | 08-12-2022 | 11:45 am
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The Indian Express | 2 hours ago | 08-12-2022 | 11:45 am
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Times of India | 7 hours ago | 08-12-2022 | 06:55 am
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AURANGABAD: The Bombay high court at Aurangabad has asked local civic bodies and police in the 12 districts falling under its jurisdiction to initiate a drive for surprise checks in various shops and establishments, whether registered or operating unauthorizedly, to trace out nylon manja (kite string) sold for the purpose of flying kites. The bench of Justice Ravindra Ghuge and Justice Sanjay Deshmukh on December 1 asked the local administration and especially the police authorities to initiate a similar drive to confiscate such items and register offences against the shop owners for retaining and selling the banned kite strings. Four days after the HC order, a scooterist in Nashik city received eight stitches on the neck after a nylon manja cut his neck in Satpur area on December 4. A day later (December 5), a 45-year-old man riding his scooter died after nylon manja slit his throat in Daund. The HC bench was hearing a suo motu PIL it had initiated on January 1, 2021 after taking cognisance of a couple of TOI reports published on December 30, 2020, highlighting the menace of nylon manja and poor crackdown against it. On December 1, the HC said, "If shop owners are found to have been indulged in such an offence for the second time or more, the authorities are at liberty to initiate action of cancellation of the registration of shops by following due procedure under the Maharashtra Shops and Regulations Act." Aurangabad: The Bombay high court at Aurangabad has asked local civic bodies and police in the 12 districts falling under its jurisdiction to initiate a drive for surprise checks in various shops and establishments, whether registered or operating unauthorizedly, to trace out nylon manja (kite string) sold for the purpose of flying kites. The bench of Justice Ravindra Ghuge and Justice Sanjay Deshmukh on December 1 asked the local administration and especially the police authorities to initiate a similar drive to confiscate such items and register offences against the shop owners for retaining and selling the banned kite strings. Four days after the HC order, a scooterist in Nashik city received eight stitches on the neck after a nylon manja cut his neck in Satpur area on December 4. A day later (December 5), a 45-year-old man riding his scooter died after nylon manja slit his throat in Daund. The HC bench was hearing a suo motu PIL it had initiated on January 1, 2021 after taking cognisance of a couple of TOI reports published on December 30, 2020, highlighting the menace of nylon manja and poor crackdown against it. On December 1, the HC said, "If shop owners are found to have been indulged in such an offence for the second time or more, the authorities are at liberty to initiate action of cancellation of the registration of shops by following due procedure under the Maharashtra Shops and Regulations Act."

Bombay HC for surprise checks, cancelling shop registrations to curb nylon manja use