If fresh evidence is provided, reopening of case may be considered: Minister.
Mumbai: Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh fired a salvo at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday by announcing that the state government was open to reinvestigating the case of special CBI judge B.H. Loya’s death.
Loya, who was hearing the high-profile Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case — in which now Union home minister Amit Shah was an accused — died of cardiac arrest in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, where he had gone to attend the wedding of a colleague’s daughter. Allegations of foul play were raised in the wake of his demise.
“Our government is open to reinvestigating the Loya case. A few people have asked me for time to present new documents. If fresh evidence is provided, reopening of the case might be considered,” Mr Deshmukh said on Thursday. He, however, refused to divulge the names of people who have spoken with him regarding new evidence.
BJP MLA Ashish Shelar criticised Mr Deshmukh for his statement. “If the Supreme Court has closed the case, what is the reason for the home minister to make such statements? Is he acting as per the law or are there political intentions behind this?” he said.
Mr Deshmukh’s statement on Justice Loya came a day after he stated that the case against the woman who had held a “Free Kashmir” banner at a protest rally would be reviewed, irking the BJP.
“So person displaying anti-national poster with video proof & having FIR to get special review says state HM & Supreme Court dismissed Loya case to be reopened, says home minister! Is home minister upholding law or twisting law? At whose behest is he acting? (sic)” Mr Shelar tweeted.
Mr Deshmukh had said that the state government would review the case filed by the Colaba police against Mehak Mirza Prabhu, a protester who brandished a “Free Kashmir” banner during the rally at the Gateway of India, where thousands had thronged on Sunday night to protest the attack on students and teachers of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in New Delhi.
“We all know that the Internet and SMS services have been shut down in Kashmir and the people there are facing various restrictions. Several leaders there have also been detained. The woman has clarified that the ‘Free Kashmir’ banner was regarding those restrictions,” Mr Deshmukh said on Wednesday.
Ms Prabhu was booked under Section 153B of the Indian Penal Code for imputations and assertions prejudicial to national integration. No arrests have been made so far. If convicted, an accused booked under this charge could face imprisonment for a maximum of five years.