Friday, February 23, 2024

Supreme Court rejects plea by NIA to quash Chhattisgarh Police FIR on 2013 Maoist attack on Congress leaders

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The Supreme Court has spurned the plea by National Investigation Agency (NIA) requesting to quash second criminal complaint into the 2013 Maoist attack on Congress leaders.

The plea by NIA has alleged that there was a larger political conspiracy behind the attack.

The bench comprising of Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud with Justices JB Pardiwala and Justice Manoj Misra not only refused the plea but also turned down the request by NIA to transfer the investigation into the second criminal complaint from the Chhattisgarh State police to the central agency.

The Court while dismissing the NIA’s plea said they were not inclined to entertain the Special Leave Petition under Article 136 of the Constitution and dismissed it.

The High Court in March 2022,had upheld a special NIA court order that had declined to quash the second first information report (FIR) or transfer it to the NIA for a further probe.

The state police in 2020 filed second FIR was filed by the State police in 2020, on the basis of a complaint by the son of one of the deceased Congress leaders. The complainant alleged that the larger political conspiracy behind the incident had not been examined by the NIA when it conducted its probe into the matter.

The matter pertains to the attack that took place in May 2013 which led to at least 27 deaths.

On Tuesday, the counsel for the State of Chhattisgarh argued before the top court that the case involves questions of national interest.

On the other hand, the counsel for the NIA contended that the High Court order would lead to two investigations and that even the Union Home Ministry had recommended that the NIA should probe the allegations in the second FIR.

The Chhattisgarh government countered that the NIA never investigated the political conspiracy angle since 2013 and had in fact closed the case.

The Supreme Court was further informed by the State that even the previous political regime in 2016 had written to the Central government to initiate a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into this aspect since the NIA had not done its job.

Additional Solicitor General SV Raju appeared for the NIA on Tuesday.

Senior Advocate ANS Nandkarni with advocate Sumeer Sodhi appeared for the Chhattisgarh government.

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