New Delhi, January 12
The Supreme Court on Friday termed as a “serious matter” the issue of alleged mysterious death of special CBI judge BH Loya, who was hearing the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case, and sought response from the Maharashtra government on pleas seeking an independent probe into it.
The top court said, “This matter requires bi-party hearing rather than ex parte”.
A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and MM Shantanagoudar asked Maharasthra Government counsel Nishant R Katneshwarkar to file reply by January 15.
At the outset, senior advocate Dushyant Dave, representing the Bombay lawyers association, said the high court is seized of the matter and the apex court should not hear the pleas.
“The Bombay High Court is seized of the matter and in my opinion the Supreme Court should not hear this matter. If the court goes ahead with the hearing, it may have implications before the high court,” Dave said.
Senior advocate Indira Jaising, appearing for one of the petitioners, Maharashtra-based journalist BR Lone, said she had also instructions from the Bombay lawyers association that this matter should not be heard by the top court.
The bench, however, said it would look into the petitions but would also consider the objections raised.
Advocate Varinder Kumar Sharma, appearing for another petitioner Congress leader Tehseen Poonawala, said this is a case where a mysterious death of a judge had taken place on December 1, 2014 and it needed to be investigated.
The bench then asked Katneshwarkar to file the mortem report and other relevant documents regarding the death of judge Loya besides taking instruction from the government.
The bench posted the matter for further hearing on January 15.
Loya had died of cardiac arrest in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, when he had gone to attend the wedding of a colleague’s daughter.