New Delhi: The Supreme court today reserved its verdict on the plea filed by Rhea Chakraborty, seeking transfer of investigation from Bihar to Maharashtra in the Sushant Singh Rajput death case. The case has been transferred to the CBI by the Bihar government.
Senior Advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for Rhea Chakraborty, submitted that the FIR filed by Rajput’s father has nothing to do with the FIR filed in Patna. “There is also considerable interference by the state, which means that there is an apprehension of bias,”submitted Divan.
He further submitted that there was a considerable amount of delay in filing the FIR. Moreover, subsequent to Rhea filing a transfer petition, the Bihar governor referred the matter to the CBI. “You cannot have executive actions that nullify the SC’s jurisdiction. If the SC believes that a transfer to CBI should be ordered, the Supreme Court should do so. It cannot be done through the Government of Bihar.”
Divan, further apprehending that the case was being used for political ends, urged the bench to transfer the case to Mumbai Police.
The single judge bench of Justice Hrishikesh Roy, however, reminded Divan that his petition itself sought CBI investigation.
Senior Advocate Maninder Singh, appearing for the Bihar government, submitted: “It was the need and the requirement for the Bihar police to step in. It is not possible without registering any FIR. Maharashtra has directly jumped to examining 56 persons.”
He further submitted that the FIR in Bihar was registered on basis of legality, because some authority – and not social media – has to investigate.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for the state of Maharashtra, began his submissions by stating that there was absolute lack of jurisdiction by Bihar police. Moreover, the Bihar government was making very weird and remarkable basis of claiming jurisdiction. He further stated: “This case shows how federalism is being subverted.”
“Murder of the CrPC is being attempted in this case where jurisdiction is a casualty. Bihar says the deceased belongs to Bihar. This is stretching it beyond imagination,” added Singhvi.
Singhvi further submitted that the case was being used for political gains in the upcoming Bihar elections said: “Let us not boast that Bihar police is the best one. This is a new law that investigation has to be over by June 25. Without a finding of perversity how can the case go to CBI?”
Senior Advocate Vikas Singh, appearing for Rajput’s father, submitted: “Murder of CrPC is being done, but it’s very evident who is doing this murder.”
Citing Lalita Kumari’s case, Singh submitted that if the case has been messed up by one state it has to be taken over by the other state. “Mumbai Police summoned everyone else except the real suspects or accused. The dead body itself will show marks on the neck could be of a belt. It has to be she (Rhea) who controlled everything and she had to be investigated but Mumbai Police was doing something else,” submitted Singh.
Singh further submitted that Vinay Tiwari, the officer from Bihar was forcibly quarantined on August 2 and an order was passed on August 3 stating that there will be no exception for home quarantine for someone coming from outside the state. This was all done to cover up the act of the state government.
Turning towards the bench, Singh said: “Please ensure that when the CBI goes to Maharashtra, this home quarantine does not apply to them again.”
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CBI, submitted that the CBI has already taken a decision that it would accede to the request of the Bihar government.
Referring to the ‘misleading statements’ part of the Maharashtra affidavit, Mehta submitted that the investigation has to be free, fair and truth should come out. “When there is no investigation, there is no question of transferring the investigation.”
He further says that the 56 statements recorded by Mumbai police have no sanctity in the eyes of the law.
Mehta submitted that Investigation is only happening in Bihar. Validity of the FIR might be in question, but there is no investigation in Mumbai at all. Moreover, “what the Maharashtra government has put in a sealed cover are not details of the investigation. They are unauthorized recording of statements,” added Mehta.
Mehta further submitted that the Enforcement Directorate is already investigating. Once one central agency has registered a case, another central agency (CBI) should be engaged.
The bench has directed all the parties to submit their written submissions by August 13.
– India Legal Bureau