Apex court issues notice to CBI in Rizwanur case

Monday, June 7, 2010

NEW DELHI - The Supreme Court Monday issued notice to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on whether the agency could re-investigate the “murder” of Rizwanur Rehman who died under mysterious circumstances in Kolkata after marrying a business tycoon’s daughter.

The apex court, however, declined to stay the operation of the Calcutta High Court order by which it had asked the CBI to hold investigation into the “murder”.

The inter-religious marriage between Rizwanur Rehman and Priyanka did not find approval with the girl’s family and Rizwanur was under pressure from her parents to separate. He was found dead on railway tracks in Kolkata Sep 21, 2007. Rizwanur and Priyanka had got married Aug 18, 2007.

The vacation bench of the Supreme Court headed by Justice Deepak Verma and comprising Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan issued notice to the CBI and the complainant Kishwar Jahan. Kishwar Jahan is the mother of the deceased Rizwanur Rehman.

The high court May 18, 2010, had quashed the chargesheet filed by the CBI charging Priyanka’s father Ashok Kumar Todi for abetment to suicide. The high court has given CBI four months’ time to complete re-investigation into the case. Incidentally, after the case was initially handed over to CBI, the investigating agency started probing the murder dimension but eventually concluded that it was a case of abetment to suicide.

The court’s direction came after senior counsel Mukul Rohtagi appearing for petitioner Ashok Kumar Todi challenged the Calcutta High Court direction to the CBI to re-investigate into the incident. He wondered how the high court could come to the conclusion that it was a case of murder.

Rohtagi further asked under what provision of the criminal law the high court could direct the CBI to re-investigate the case. The senior counsel said that it was beyond the jurisdiction of the high court to pass such an order.

Rohtagi told the court after the high court had pronounced it to be a case of murder then what was left for the trial court to do.

When senior counsel Kalyan Banerjee appearing for Kishwar Jahan opposed the plea by Rohtagi, the court asked him to tell them how could the high court direct re-investigation by the CBI.

The apex court asked: “Can the high court give such a direction?”

Filed under: Court, Immigration

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