New Delhi: In a blow to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), the Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected its plea against the Chhattisgarh Police investigation into the FIR alleging a larger conspiracy in the 2013 Jheeram Valley Naxalite attack, including leaders of the state Congress unit. 29 people had died. ,
A bench of Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices JB Pardiwala and Manoj Mishra said, “Sorry, we would not like to interfere. Dismissed.” During the hearing, Additional Solicitor General SV Raju, appearing for the NIA, told the bench that the larger conspiracy angle in the incident should be investigated by the NIA as the main FIR in the case has been investigated by the central agency.
He said when Chhattisgarh Police refused to hand over the records to the NIA, the agency moved the trial court, which rejected the plea.
“Subsequently, the High Court also dismissed the petition against the order of the trial court on March 2, 2022,” he said, adding that while the main case is being investigated by the NIA, one related to the same incident A separate FIR cannot be investigated. Another agency.
Raju said that the charge sheet has been filed in the main case and out of 109 witnesses, 84 witnesses have been examined so far.
“Seven years after the incident, in 2020, a person comes forward alleging a larger conspiracy and the state police files an FIR based on his complaint,” the ASG said.
He said there are several judgments of the apex court which say that all connected cases have to be investigated by one agency.
Senior advocate ANS Nadkarni and lawyer Sumeer Sodhi, appearing for the Chhattisgarh government, strongly opposed the NIA’s arguments and said the state had initially requested the agency to investigate the larger conspiracy aspect of the incident but they had refused.
“The state government then requested the Center to hand over the investigation of a major conspiracy to the CBI because the NIA had refused to investigate. The Center refused to hand over the investigation to the CBI. Then what could the state government do? He asked the police to register an FIR and investigate the larger conspiracy aspect, Nadkarni said.
He informed the court that the NIA never investigated the aspect of the larger conspiracy since 2013 and only investigated the incident, which is evident from its charge sheet in the case.
Nadkarni said, “Criminal conspiracy under section 120B of the IPC is not a scheduled offence. It is a standalone offense and can be investigated separately by the police. The NIA can only investigate scheduled offences.” He said that the Central Investigation Agency approached the trial court. To transfer the FIR from the police but the lower court does not have the power to do so.
“The trial court rightly rejected their (NIA) plea to transfer the FIR and the High Court upheld the order,” he said.
The bench also heard the counsel for Jitendra Mudaliar, son of the complainant Congress leader, who lost his life in the incident and on whose complaint the state police had registered an FIR related to the conspiracy.
He said, “NIA never investigated how such a large number of Naxalites gathered at one place and how and why the security of the Congress leaders killed on the day of the incident was reduced.”
The apex court had initially stayed further investigation into the larger conspiracy aspect by the state police.
On May 25, 2013, Naxalites attacked the convoy of Congress leaders in Jheeram Valley of Darbha area of Bastar district, in which 29 people including the then State Congress President Nand Kumar Patel, former Leader of Opposition Mahendra Karma and former Union Minister Vidyacharan Shukla died. It was done.
The deadly attack by heavily armed Naxalites took place when political campaigning for the then assembly elections was going on and Congress leaders were returning after taking part in the ‘Parivartan Rally’ in Bastar district.
(This report has been published as part of an auto-generated syndicated wire feed. Except for the headline, there have been no edits to the body by ABP Live.)