The Calcutta High Court in its judgment has ordered the handing over of all cases of post-poll violence in West Bengal to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The larger bench of five judges delivered the verdict at 11 am through video conferencing.
Kolkata: The Calcutta High Court in its judgment has ordered the handing over of all cases of post-poll violence in West Bengal to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The larger bench of five judges delivered the verdict at 11 am through video conferencing.
A bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justices IP Mukherjee, Harish Tandon, Soumen Sen and Subrata Talukdar ordered a court-monitored CBI probe into the incidents of post-poll violence.
The court also ordered setting up of an SIT for investigation, with senior officers of West Bengal cadre joining the team.
Responding to the verdict, Trinamool Congress (TMC) Saugata Roy said, "I am unhappy with the verdict. If in every law and order matter which is completely under the jurisdiction of the state government, CBI comes into it, then it is the state government's authority."
"There is a violation of rights. I am sure the West Bengal government will judge the situation and decide to appeal to the High Court if necessary," he added.
However, Union Minister Anurag Thakur has welcomed this decision of the court.
"Everyone has the right to spread his ideology in a democracy, but anyone is allowed to spread violence. There is no place for violence in a democracy," he said.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) team probing the post-poll violence in West Bengal submitted its final report to the Calcutta High Court on July 15. The 50-page report termed the state's position as an expression of the 'rule of law' rather than 'rule of law'.
The committee, in its remarks in the final report, had said, "It was retaliatory violence by supporters of the ruling party against the supporters of the main opposition party. It recommended that the investigation of serious crimes such as rape and murder be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI)."
The Calcutta High Court also said that the hearing of the cases should be done outside West Bengal.
The Calcutta High Court had made a similar remark on July 2, saying the West Bengal government was in denial about the violence in May after the elections were over. The Calcutta High Court had said that there is enough evidence to prove that the post-election violence did indeed take place in West Bengal.
Opposing the findings and recommendations of the NHRC committee report, senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing the West Bengal DGP, had claimed that it was wrong and biased, alleging that some of the members of the NHRC panel were aligned with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the main political opposition in West Bengal.
In the post-poll violence in West Bengal, PILs have alleged that people were assaulted, forced to run away from homes and their property was destroyed.