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Judiciary

SC notice to WB on plea to transfer post poll violence cases outside state due to threat, intimidation

By Jhanak Singh      19 February, 2024 06:37 PM      0 Comments
SC notice to WB on plea to transfer post poll violence cases outside state due to threat intimidation

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has issued notice to the West Bengal government on a plea by the CBI to transfer multiple cases lodged following a series of violence after Assembly polls in 2021 outside the state on account of alleged "open threats and intimidation of not only to witnesses but to counsel as well".

A bench of Justice Sanjay Karol  also ordered for stay on the proceedings in the cases referred by the CBI and allowed a request made by Additional Solicitor General S V Raju for publication of the notice in local newspapers.

"In the meanwhile, further proceedings of the trial referred to in the prayer clause at page 58 onwards of the instant petition, shall remain stayed," the bench ordered.

The CBI sought transfer of cases, which are pending trial at various courts, within the State of West Bengal to any other place outside the State.

Raju submitted that the officers, officials, the complainants, advocates and the witnesses are "being openly threatened and intimidated, thus obstructing and impeding the cause and course of justice".

"Despite the matter having brought to the notice of the authorities, no action at the ground level appears to have been taken," the bench noted.

Raju sought specific attention to the complaint made on July 13, 2022 by the petitioner’s lawyer pointing out as to how even he is being threatened.

He also referred to the report of the enquiry committee of July 12, 2021 prepared by the National Human Rights Commission, categorically recommending trial of all cases investigated by the CBI to be held outside the State of West Bengal.

"In the attending facts and circumstances, having perused the material placed on record, accounting for the nature of cases and the allegations made therein, issue notice to each one of the respondents arrayed as party in the instant petition," the bench ordered.

The court directed the Director General of Police, West Bengal to ensure compliance of the order and also file his personal affidavit reporting compliance.



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