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Judiciary

SC questions WB govt for filing plea against CBI probe into charges of sexual exploitation, land grab in Sandeshkhali

By Jhanak Singh      29 April, 2024 01:50 PM      0 Comments
SC questions WB govt for filing plea against CBI probe into charges of sexual exploitation land grab in Sandeshkhali

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday raised questions over the West Bengal filing a plea against a direction to transfer the probe to the CBI into charges of mass sexual exploitation of women and land grab in Sandeshkhali allegedly by a ruling TMC party member, now suspended, Sheikh Shahjahan and others.

Also Read -  WB files plea in SC against HC order for CBI probe into Sandeshkhali incidents of sexual exploitation, land grab

Dealing with a special leave petition by the Mamata Banerjee government, a bench of Justices B R Gavai and Sandeep Mehta asked the state counsel, "How can the State be aggrieved with the order against the private parties instead of the accused?"

The state government represented by senior advocate Jaydeep Gupta claimed there were observations made against it.

"You may go to the HC for expunging remarks," the bench shot back.

Initially, senior advocate A M Singhvi sought adjournment for two weeks to file additional documents.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta asked why the State should be aggrieved in the matter.

The bench concurred Mehta's suggestion but allowed the plea for adjournment and posted the matter in July.

The bench, however, clarified the pendency of the special leave petition here would not be used for prolonging any proceedings or to be used for any purposes.

The Calcutta High Court had on April 10 ordered for the CBI probe into charges of sexual exploitation of women and land grab made against suspended TMC leader Shahjahan and others in Sandeshkhali in North 24 Parganas district.

The TMC government claimed the HC failed to notice the PILs were filed by the interested parties with oblique political motives. It had contended the HC also ignored 43 FIRs were filed by the police, in 42 cases, chargesheets have been filed under various penal sections including Section 376 IPC. In seven cases of land grabbing, charge sheets have been filed on February 08, 2024, apart from 24 cases of land grabbing having been registered by the state police.

A series of protests were witnessed in Sandeshkhali since February 7, 2024, alleging molestation, rape and land grabbing against TMC leader Sheikh Sahajahan and his associates, Shibu Hazra and Sushanta Sardar alias Uttam Sardar.

In its plea, the state government claimed the High Court's order demoralised the entire state machinery, including the police force which has tirelessly and endlessly carried out their duties to ensure that the perpetrators are apprehended and prosecuted, but also the officials from the land records department, who have been termed guilty for mutating the land, and held to be co-conspirators in a callous manner. The HC had in its order also noted that the CBI was already probing the matter related to attack on Enforcement Directorate officials at Sandeshkhali.

 



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