CBI court takes cognizance against accused in Bihar journalist murder case
Designated CBI judge Anupama Kumari took cognizance against Sonu Kumar Soni and committed the case to the sessions court. Soni has been made accused in the case along with prime suspect Azharuddin Beg alias Laddan Mian, Javed Mian alias Javed Bhatti and Mohammad Kaif.india Updated: Feb 21, 2017 14:15 IST
A special CBI court at Muzaffarpur in Bihar, 70km from state capital Patna, has taken cognizance of charges against Sonu Kumar Soni, one of the accused in the murder case of Hindustan journalist Rajdeo Ranjan.
Designated CBI judge Anupama Kumari took cognizance against Sonu Kumar Soni on Monday and committed the case to the sessions court.
Soni’s lawyer Sharad Sinha said the sessions court would now frame charges before commencing the trial.
He said 51 persons had been made witness in the 60-page chargesheet filed in the court by the CBI, which is investigating the case.
Soni has been made accused in the case along with prime suspect Azharuddin Beg alias Laddan Mian, Javed Mian alias Javed Bhatti and Mohammad Kaif.
Ranjan was gunned down by motorbike-borne criminals near the busy Station Road at Siwan in north Bihar on May 13, last year.
The Bihar government had on, May 16, 2016, within three days of the murder, had handed over the probe to the CBI. The central probe agency began probe into the case on the intervention of the Supreme Court after slain journalist’s wife Asha Ranjan filed a petition before it on September 23 last year. Asha Ranjan claimed before the Supreme Court that the CBI had not even initiated probe into the case due to “political influence” and “fear of (former Siwan MP and strongman) Mohammad Shahabuddin”.
The top court had directed the CBI to proceed with its probe into the murder and asked the Bihar police to provide protection to Ranjan’s family, which claimed receiving threats from Shahabuddin.
Of the five accused, Javed Mian and Mohammad Kaif have been granted bail by the CBI court after the probe agency failed to file the chargesheet within the stipulated 90 days.