The Punjab and Haryana high court on Thursday asked the Haryana government why all the FIRs, except the one registered into the alleged Murthal gangrape case, should not be handed over to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for further probe.
The high court bench of justice SS Saron and justice Lisa Gill also sought CBI response on the petition by Saturday.
The development comes during hearing of an application moved by Satyapal Sindhu, brother of finance minister Captain Abhimanyu, who approached the court on Thursday, alleging inaction by the state police into FIR registered into damage to his properties during the quota stir.
A total of 2,104 FIRs, including one for alleged gangrapes in Murthal, were registered in connection with the Jat quota violence in February this year. A total of 701 persons have been arrested.
The Haryana government has already requested the central government to entrust the CBI with probe of three FIRs registered in Rohtak of vandalism and arson, including at the residence of finance minister Captain Abhimanyu during the agitation. But the request is still pending.
Appearing for the finance minister’s brother, senior advocate RS Rai said that despite lapse of six months, the state government had failed to arrest the perpetrators of arson and loot in February. Even the lower court had expressed its displeasure over the progress of probe into the FIRs registered into damage to his properties.
“Every day, the petitioner sees those persons who were responsible for the act roaming free in the area. But no arrest so far by the police,” he said seeking the court’s intervention.
The court was told that Sindhu’s properties worth `15 crore were damaged. These include Hari Bhoomi Communication Private Limited press, Shyam Indus Power Solutions Pvt Ltd and Sindhu Farms. The arsonists stole the parts of machines and other material placed inside the office of the press and these places were turned into ashes,” the court was informed.
Appearing for the government, additional advocate general Lokesh Sinhal said that a report would be submitted on the next date of hearing, but added that three of the eight accused had been arrested and two were on bail.
The high court observed that there appeared lack of proper follow-ups by the advocate general’s office and further stated that the court would have to ask the local magistrates to take over the probes, if this continued.
Intervening in the matter, amicus curiae Anupam Gupta said that fault lay with the government, not with the advocate general’s office. “Let the government not hide behind the callousness of the advocate general’s office. The finance minister’s brother is here. It could not be worse than this. Let CBI be roped in,” he said demanding a CBI probe and referred to recent transfer of alleged Mewat gangrape case stating that the police botched up probe in these cases as well. Hence, government sent the matter for CBI probe.
He alleged that the government was trying to cover up the Jat quota violence cases.
Later, the court issued a notice to CBI and asked the state as to why all the FIRs should not be sent for CBI probe, except the one relating to the alleged Murthal gangrape case.
The court was earlier told by special investigation (SIT) head Mamta Singh that two weeks’ time was needed for any further probe report on Murthal FIRs as some reports sent to forensic laboratory were awaited. The court did not seek response on these FIRs. It also ordered that the police file pertaining to f Sindhu’s FIR be presented on Saturday.