Sushant Singh Rajput case: Maharashtra didn’t lodge FIR due to political pressure, Bihar govt tells SC
Sushant Singh Rajput, 34, was found dead at his apartment in suburban Bandra in Mumbai on June 14 and since then Mumbai Police has been probing the case.Updated: Aug 13, 2020 15:42 IST
Maharashtra Police neither registered an FIR on actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide nor did it extend any support to Patna Police for investigating the case on “account of political pressure”, the Bihar government told the Supreme Court on Thursday.
The Bihar government and Rhea Chakraborty, against whom an FIR has been filed in Patna for allegedly abetting Rajput’s suicide, have filed their written submissions in the top court on the actress’ plea seeking transfer of the FIR to Mumbai.
Chakraborty said that transfer of investigation to the CBI at the behest of Bihar Police was without the state’s jurisdiction in the case.
Rajput, 34, was found dead at his apartment in suburban Bandra in Mumbai on June 14 and since then Mumbai Police has been probing the case.
The Bihar government, in its submission filed through its lawyer Keshav Mohan, said: “It is apparent that it is on account of political pressure in the State of Maharashtra that neither the FIR has been registered by the Mumbai Police nor did they extend any cooperation to Bihar Police in discharging their obligation to conduct investigation expeditiously.” The submission, settled by senior advocate Mainder Singh, said that nothing further is called for in the present Transfer Petition of Rhea and it deserved to be rejected or disposed of.
“In the facts and circumstances of the present case, it is humbly submitted that no impediment would deserve to be allowed to come in the way of CBI to undertake and complete the investigation expeditiously,” the Bihar government said.
On the other hand, Rhea submitted that Bihar had no jurisdiction to either to lodge an FIR or to transfer it.
“It is submitted that the investigations in Bihar are totally illegal and such illegal proceedings cannot be transferred to CBI in the present manner by way of illegal executive orders. The Petitioner has no objection if the transfer of investigation to CBI is done in exercise of powers conferred upon this Court under Article 142 of the Constitution of India. “Otherwise, the present transfer from Bihar Police to CBI as is done is totally without jurisdiction and contrary to law”.
The apex court had on August 11 reserved its order on Chakraborty’s plea and asked the parties concerned to file their written submissions by Thursday.
Rhea dealt with the legal provisions and said her transfer plea was maintainable.
“Even on a reading of the FIR, no part of the offence has taken place in Bihar. Even the FIR alleges that all acts have happened only in Mumbai and as such Patna (Bihar) has only been mentioned owing to the Complainant’s residence being at Patna,” she said.
“A plain reading of the subject FIR is clearly indicative of the fact that no such consequence of such alleged act has ensued within the State of Bihar,” she said.
The maximum that may be done in such instance, is for the FIR to be registered as a “Zero FIR” and the same may be forwarded to the Police Station having jurisdiction over the matter, she said.
The transfer of probe to CBI at the behest of Bihar police is “wholly without jurisdiction”, she said.
However, the Bihar government referred to legal provisions and said that it had the jurisdiction as some of the consequences of the offence were there under its jurisdiction.
It said: “The Mumbai Police had only been carrying out inquest proceedings u/s 174 / 175 CrPC...The proceedings are only for the purpose of ascertaining the “cause of death.
“The proceedings come to an end on ascertaining the ‘cause of death’ and in any case, when the post-mortem report is received. In the present case, on receipt of the post-mortem report by Mumbai Police on June 25, the proceedings...came to a close.” Admittedly, no FIR has been registered by the Mumbai Police and hence it has not been carrying out any legal “investigation” as envisaged in law after receiving the postmortem report, it said.
“This court had made observations regarding the said IPS Officer of Bihar police being incapacitated in the name of “quarantine’ – in the hearing... The State of Bihar had expected that the said IPS Officer would get relieved from “quarantine” immediately...” it said.
It is a matter of anguish and pain that it had taken a time of almost 3 days for Maharashtra, which decided to relieve him only in the evening on August 7, it said.
Rhea had tweeted to the Union Home Minister requesting for investigation by the CBI, the state government said, adding that now the CBI would be filing the report after investigating the case.
It termed Rhea’s plea was not maintainable.
On August 11, the Bihar government had the Supreme Court that “political clout” has not allowed Mumbai Police to even register an FIR in the Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide cas, even as the Maharashtra government maintained Bihar completely lacks jurisdiction in the matter.
The FIR in Patna has been registered against Chakraborty and others for alleged offences under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 306 (abetment of suicide), 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 342 (punishment for wrongful confinement), 380 (theft in dwelling house), 406 (punishment for criminal breach of trust) and 420 (Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property).