Ask Maharashtra to state position on Judge Loya probe, Dave urges SC
Bombay Lawyers Association, through their counsel Dushyant Dave, asked the SC why it was reluctant to ask Maharashtra its stand. He also argued that the SC was following a flawed procedure
The Bombay Lawyers Association (BLA) on Monday urged the Supreme Court to direct the Maharashtra government to make its position clear through an affidavit vis-a-vis an independent probe into Judge BH Loya's death in 2014.
Judge Loya was presiding over a Special CBI court conducting the trial in the staged shootout killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his aide Tusliram Prajapati.
"I don't know why the court is reluctant to issue notice and ask the state (Maharashtra) to make its stand (clear) on affidavit," senior counsel Dushyant Dave told a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud while pointing out that the procedure being followed by it was flawed.
As Dave defended the role of his client BLA, the bench said: "We have not questioned the bona fides of the Bombay Lawyers Association."
"We give (the matter) the highest amount of seriousness. We treat it as a cause," the court said, adding that it did not care what was being said outside and it would do its duty if anything raised suspicions.
Dave said that the four judges who have given statements that Judge Loya met a natural end be asked to do so on sworn affidavits.
Describing the procedure followed by the top court while hearing a public interest litigation that seeks an independent probe into Judge Loya's death on December 1, 2014, as an "unhealthy practice", Dave said: " If a person is holding a high position, his words have to be accepted. This is not the way, this is not the law."
Responding to the Maharashtra government's contention attributing "motives" to everything starting with an article in The Caravan magazine and PILs filed thereafter, the senior counsel said the petitioner did not have "political motives" or "personal interest" in the matter.
"This cause is not political," Dave said after the Maharashtra counsel said all this was because of a man "who is seen behind everything", apparently referring to Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah.