CALCUTTA HIGH COURT JUDGMENTS

Calcutta High Court ordered for verifiable independent expert opinion on Police Investigation Report-15/11/2019

Facts: A person who was employed as an officer in the Sashatra Seema Bal ( under Ministry of Home Affairs) and was heading the intelligence wing of the department was murdered on 17.04.2018 while on duty. He was posted in Panitanki (Indo- Nepal Border) and mainly entrusted with the job of collecting intelligence reports relating to cross border trafficking, smuggling of narcotics etc. Being in the Intelligence department, he was in possession of several vital information relating to smugglers operating in that area and probably due to that reason he was murdered by the miscreants. His corpse was found near a railway track in the Panitanki area. An U/D case by GRPS was initiated. After 30 days, an FIR was registered u/s 304 stating that the death was due to a railway accident. Police never entertained the grievance of the deceased’s family members and were hell-bent from the beginning to show the death as accidental and not homicidal. The Post mortem report clearly stated that the death was due to sudden hit with sharp weapons and the death was certainly not accidental. Further, the injuries were ante-mortem in nature.

Family members prayed for the addition of Section 302 before the ACJM, Siliguri and upon order of the ACJM, 302 was added. There was no progress in the investigation till then.

A writ petition was filed praying for transfer of investigation to the CBI or any other independent agency of similar stature. On different occasions before the high court, the IO prayed for time to file a progress report. On the last occasion, Justice Moushumi Bhattacharya directed to file a completion report of investigation in 4 weeks. Yesterday,the matter was moved before justice Subrata Talukder. Meanwhile, the IO submitted a final report stating the incident as accidental and also filed that report before the High Court yesterday. Justice Talukder passed an order that an independent 3rd party opinion relating to the investigation done by police so far, is required to ascertain whether the investigation was tainted or not and directed me to give name of any independent agency to which the records can be transferred to test the authenticity/quality of investigation done by police so far. Only after the expert opinion is obtained, the court will decide whether a further investigation by any other investigating authority is required or not.

Such kind of direction seems quite unusual.


The text of the Order as below :

Considering the nature of duties and in the jurisdiction exercised by the deceased and considering the death of the deceased at the age of 52 years while in service, such an event cannot be taken lightly, irrespective of whether a writ petition had been filed or not. The writ petition has only added substance to the requirement of an in-depth investigation. The Court is therefore in requirement of a verifiable independent expert opinion on the results of the investigation collected so far.

Jyotsna Roy -VS- State of West Bengal & Ors.

 

SL-3 15.11.2019
Court No.1
KB/G.S.D

Calcutta High Court
In the Circuit Bench at Jalpaiguri
WPA 201 of 2019

CAN 1 of 2019

Jyotsna Roy -VS- State of West Bengal & Ors.

Appearance: 

Mr. Arjun Chowdhury
… for the petitioner

Mr. Subir Kr. Saha
Mr. Bikramaditya Ghosh
… For the State

Mr. Samir Pal

    … For the Respondent Nos. 2 and 6

Party/Parties is/are represented in the order/orders of their name/names as printed above in the cause title.

Abundant documents are placed on behalf of both the petitioner and the Investigating Officer, i.e. the State respondents, connected to the alleged cause of death of the writ petitioner.

This Court also notices the order of the Hon’ble Single Bench dated September 11, 2019 directing, inter alia, the Investigating Agency to file a complete Report on the investigation on November 5, 2019 before the Hon’ble Bench.

Today, Mr. Chowdhury, Learned Advocate, appears for the petitioner and assails the Report of the Investigating Officer of the Siliguri (T), GRP dated September 9, 2019 as filed before Court.

However, Mr. Ghosh, Learned State Counsel, points out that the Report dated September 9, 2019 has since been superseded by filing a Final Report under the Code of Criminal Procedure dated 14th November, 2019 again by the self-same Investigating Officer, without being able to draw a conclusion with regard to the investigation. This Court has also heard Mr. Pal, Learned Counsel, appearing for the RPF.

Considering the nature of duties and in the jurisdiction exercised by the deceased and considering the death of the deceased at the age of 52 years while in service, such an event cannot be taken lightly, irrespective of whether a writ petition had been filed or not. The writ petition has only added substance to the requirement of an in-depth investigation. The Court is therefore in requirement of a verifiable independent expert opinion on the results of the investigation collected so far.

For the above reasons, the parties and, particularly the petitioner, is permitted to revert to the Court with appropriate instructions on the next date.

Let this matter appear before the next available Circuit Bench, subject to its convenience, along with the connected application.

(SUBRATA TALUKDAR  J. )

15.11.2019


Original order :

Jyotsna Roy -VS- State of West Bengal & Ors.[PDF]