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Palghar lynching case: Maha govt affidavit in SC opposes CBI probe, wants petitioners to be penalised

The Maharashtra govt has not only sought that the petition seeking to transfer of the case of the brutal lynching of Sadhus in Palghar to CBI be dismissed but has also asked the court to impose a fine on the petitioner- Shashank Shekhar Jha, for wasting the precious time of the SC.

Days after the Supreme Court sought a response from the Maharashtra government on the petitions seeking CBI, NIA probe into the case of the brutal lynching of Hindu Sadhus in Palghar, the Maha Vikas Aghadi government led by Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray have submitted an affidavit in the apex court. In the affidavit, the Maha government has opposed the transfer of Palghar lynching case to the CBI.

It has not only sought that the petition seeking to transfer of the case of the brutal lynching of Sadhus in Palghar to CBI be dismissed but has also asked the court to impose a fine on the petitioner- Shashank Shekhar Jha, for wasting the precious time of the SC.

The SC was hearing the plea filed by advocate Shashank Shekhar Jha who has sought a court-monitored or CBI investigation into the Palghar case.

In the affidavit, Assistant Inspector General of Police Vinayak Deshmukh stated:

  • That the state CID had investigated the case in a detailed and extensive manner and filed two charge sheets before a court in Dahanu against 126 accused persons after thorough investigation.
  • Special IGP Konkan Range conducted a departmental inquiry against 18 police personnel prima facie found negligent and derelict in performing their duties in handling the incident and preventing the commissioning of the crime.
  • Assistant Police Inspector Anandrao Shivaji Kale found guilty in the departmental investigation has been dismissed from service.
  • Additionally, Assistant Police Sub-Inspector Ravindra Dinkar Salunkhe and Head Constable Naresh Dhondi have been given compulsory retirement.
  • The remaining 15 personnel have been punished by reducing their pay for a period of two to three years.

Assistant Inspector General of Police Vinayak Deshmukh in the affidavit urged the apex court bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan and Sanjiv Khanna to dismiss the petition and incur a fine on the petitioner.

SC pulled up the state government

On August 6, the apex court had pulled up the state government, asking it to file a status report in connection with the brutal lynching of two Hindu sadhus and their driver in Palghar on April 16. The Supreme Court had asked the state government to submit the charge-sheets it had filed in the case within three weeks and asked what action has been taken against the police personnel who handed over the two Hindu Sadhus to the violent mob.

Following the retribution, the Maha Vikas Aghadi government had on August 31 dismissed three police personnel from service. Notably, these three policemen, along with five others, had earlier been suspended after the incident. 

Palghar Lynching case

On the night of April 16, the two sadhus and their driver were travelling from Kandivali in Mumbai to attend a funeral in Gujarat’s Surat amid the nationwide lockdown when their vehicle was stopped and a blood thirsty mob had attacked and lynched them brutally in Gadchinchile village. The brutal lynching had taken place while police officers stood there like mute spectators. In later CCTV footages, it was also seen that the police officials had handed the Sadhus over to the mob.

The police claimed that their team which had rushed to the spot to rescue the Sadhus also came under the attack of the violent mob. But later videos emerged which completely debunked the claim of police. Contrary to the claims, the police personnel were handing over the Sadhus to the frenzied mob, which went on to beat them to death in front of the policemen.

Reports had later emerged that suggested that the brutal killing of the Sadhus might have been intentional and politically motivated. The involvement of Christian Missionary organisations and some local NCP leaders and leftists were also suspected.

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