Satpute claimed that the FIR shows that she had died at 7 pm on June 23 but the post-mortem report shows that she had died at 6.30 pm.
Mumbai: The HC has directed the state to file an affidavit within two weeks explaining why it was the Byculla women’s prison inmates, and not the prison authorities, who had submitted a complaint for the registration of an FIR with the police in the death of prisoner Manju Shetye (45). The court also asked the state to explain the delay in taking Shetye to the hospital after six female jail officials allegedly assaulted her on June 23. The woman had been declared ‘brought dead’ by JJ Hospital.
A division bench of Justice R.M. Savant and Justice Sadhana Jadhav was hearing a petition filed by Pune resident Pradeep Bhalekar, who sought independent inqu-iry by the state CID in the matter. The state has transferred the investigation from the local police station to the crime branch and initiated a departmental inquiry against the six accused.
On Monday, Bhalekar’s lawyer, Nitin Satpute, had brought to the notice of the court that there was a delay in taking Shetye to the hospital. He also sought that Section 377 of the IPC to be invoked against the accused.
Public prosecutor Mankunwar Deshmukh infor-med the court that a departmental inquiry as well as police investigation into Shetye’s death has been initiated.
Irked by the prosecutor’s reply, the court said, “We are not concerned about the inquiry. We know how a departmental inquiry in such matters is carried out. We don’t want the investigation report or the inquiry-status report at this stage. We just want to know what the police did after Shetye’s death”.
“It is shocking that jail inmates had to register an FIR; what were the police doing? It is not easy for inmates to come out of the prison and register an FIR. It is a custodial death. The police should have registered an FIR,” said Justice Jadhav.
Mr Satpute claimed that the FIR shows that she had died at 7 pm on June 23 but the post-mortem report shows that she had died at 6.30 pm.
The state submitted a post-mortem report befo-re the court. After perusing it, the court said the state must explain in its affidavit how multiple marks were present on Shetye’s body.