Odisha police seek reply from CBI over trespassing into judge’s house
Three days after a group of CBI officials were found to be attempting to enter the official residence of a sitting judge of Odisha High Court, the police said they were waiting for response from the central agency into the incident.Updated: Sep 23, 2017 22:36 IST
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar
Three days after a group of CBI officials were found to be attempting to enter the official residence of a sitting judge of Odisha High Court, the police said they were waiting for response from the central agency into the incident.
On Tuesday night, a team of CBI officials led by their inspector PK Mishra had forcibly tried to enter the official residence of Odisha high court judge Chitta Ranjan Dash under the mistaken belief that it was still occupied by former chief justice of Odisha High Court IM Quddusi. Quddusi, now retired and staying in Noida, was arrested by CBI a day later on the charge of helping an Uttar Pradesh-based educational trust barred by the government from admitting MBBS students.
"Two days ago we asked the CBI officials to explain on what basis they entered the house of sitting judge of Odisha High Court at night violating all standard operating procedures. The nameplate of justice CR Dash was prominently displayed outside. The CBI officials should have been aware that once Quddusi had left Odisha 7 years ago and a new judge was staying. This is inexplicable. We have asked for a detailed reply. We would be getting their reply by today," said a senior Odisha police official, requesting anonymity.
The Cuttack Commissionerate police have lodged a case against the CBI under sections 120(B), 353, 511 and 34 of the IPC based on the report of the security guards who were on duty at the judge's residence.
On the otherhand, the Odisha High Court yesterday served notice on union home secretary, Director CBI, Odisha home secretary, Odisha DGP, Bhubaneswar-Cuttack Police Commissioner after the High Court Bar Association filed a PIL demanding judicial probe into the incident. The High Court has asked the CBI to mention on whose permission its team had visited the residence of a sitting HC judge. The High Court lawyers, who were on a cease work since Wednesday, have ended their agitation after a meeting of the High Court Bar Association.
Preliminary probe by police have so far revealed that the CBI team which arrived at the residence of the judge on Cantonment Road at night tried to force its way but were prevented by a 56-year-old homeguard. Impressing the CBI team that it was the residence of justice CR Dash, the homeguard reportedly asked the CBI team to come in morning if at all it was necessary. "Had it not been the homeguard, the team may have entered the house," said an official probing the incident. Police said they would seek explanation from CBI why no prior approval of chief justice of Odisha High Court for entering the premises of a judge.
The CBI officials did not show any search warrant or identity to the securityguard and kept on arguing with the homeguard till a police patrol van on duty arrived at the spot and took the officials to the Cantonment police station. After reaching the police station, the CBI team realised their mistake, but did not show any search warrant.
CBI in a press statement refuted allegations of attempting to search or trespass at the residence of any sitting High Court judge. "A CBI team with independent witnesses visited the former residence of the retired Odisha High Court judge in Cuttack in a case related to a private medical college. The visit was for recovering incriminating documents and cash. The CBI team was informed at the gate that the said retired judge was no longer residing there. The CBI immediately left the location and informed the local police of the development," the statement said.
First Published: Sep 23, 2017 22:35 IST