New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Monday expressed "unhappiness" over the status report filed by the Yogi Adityanath-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in Uttar Pradesh in connection with the violence in Lakhimpur Kheri that claimed the lives of eight people, including four farmers and three workers of the saffron party. Questioning the Yogi government, the apex court said that the status report contains "nothing apart from saying that more witnesses have been examined".
A three-judge bench which included Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justice Hima Kohli and Justice Surya Kant also expressed its dissatisfaction "over mixing of witnesses in different FIRs" and proposed to appoint a retired High Court judge from the Punjab and Haryana High Court to monitor the probe. It also suggested that Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain (Retd) or Justice Ranjit Singh (Retd) can oversee the matter.
"What it appears to us is that this SIT is unable to maintain an investigative distance between the three FIRs. Now whosoever is coming forward... it is not necessary to record all statements... it will become a case of oral evidence collected in one FIR vs another," Justice Kant was quoted as saying by Bar and Bench. "To ensure that there is no mix up of evidence in the case we are inclined to appoint a former judge of a different high court to monitor this probe. we are not confident of having your state judicial committee oversee it".
The matter will now be heard on November 12 after senior advocate Harish Salve, who was appearing for the Uttar Pradesh government, sought time to get instructions from the state government over the appointment of the former High Court judges to probe the investigation.
Eight people, including four farmers and three BJP workers, were killed in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence. Farmers blamed Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Kumar Mishra 'Teni' and his son for the violence. They claimed that Mishra's son was driving the SUV that allegedly crushed four of the farmers.
Videos were circulated on social media where a Mahindra Thar was seen knocking down protesters from behind. However, Mishra and his son have denied the charges levelled against them. Meanwhile, around 20 people, including Mishra's son, have been booked by the Uttar Pradesh Police so far.
Posted By: Aalok Sensharma