Over 100 Opposition MPs from Congress, Trinamool Congress, Samajwadi Party, Nationalist Congress Party, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Rashtriya Janata Dal, the left parties, Aam Aadmi Party, IUML, AIUDF, RSP, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, KC(M) and Janata Dal (Secular) called on President Ram Nath Kovind on Friday to ask for a Supreme Court-monitored Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the alleged mysterious death of CBI judge B H Loya.
“Judge BH Loya death is suspicious. There have been two other subsequent suspicious deaths,” Congress president Rahul Gandhi said, adding that 114 MPs from these 15 Opposition parties submitted a signed memorandum to the President, who has given a positive response
“A judge died under suspicious circumstances. It will be an ode to him and his family that the investigation takes place properly,” Rahul maintained. He further said that several parliamentarians from both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha felt discomfort over the suspicious death.
The Congress party released a copy of the memorandum through its Twitter handle:
Senior Congress leader Kabil Sibal said: “Supreme Court has made these rules that if there is a cognizable offence then an FIR should be registered immediately. If a sister of a judge has said that the former chief justice of the Bombay High Court had offered her brother a bribe of ₹100 crore in lieu of a favourable judgement in a particular case, then the FIR should have been registered in 2014 itself. But the FIR has not been filed till date. Subsequently, two more people died mysteriously, (Advocate Shrikant) Khandalkar and (a retired District judge Prakash) Thombre, who are believed to be close to judge Loya. One was thrown off from a six storey building on the court premises. The other died of spinal injury after he allegedly fell off from upper birth of a train while travelling. These two deaths are also very serious issues. These issues can't be decided through PILs. That is why we have demanded formation of a Special Investigation Team."
"We don’t trust CBI or the NIA. We know what CBI officers do...in the case of Sohrabuddin, CBI didn't file an appeal. If an independent SIT can be formed for the 2G case which was a commercial issue, then why one can not be constituted for a probing suspicious death of judge?” asked Sibal.
Said Congress leader Kabil Sibal: “Supreme Court has made these rules that if there is a cognizable offence then an FIR should be registered immediately. If a sister of a judge has said that the former chief justice of the Bombay High Court had offered her brother a bribe of ₹100 crore in lieu of a favourable judgement in a particular case, then the FIR should have been registered in 2014 itself. But the FIR has not been filed till date.”
"It is hard to believe that somebody can die in such a way. And a few days before his assassination, his security was also withdrawn," said Congress MP and Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, who was also part of the delegation.
Judge Loya was hearing a case involving the alleged fake encounter of Sohrabuddin Sheikh in Gujarat in 2005 when BJP president Amit Shah was home minister of the state. At the time of Loya’s death in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, he was hearing BJP President Amit Shah’s discharge petition in the case. According to hospital records, Loya passed away following a heart attack.
Though no one from his family, his colleagues or for that matter the media reported suspicions around the circumstances of Loya’s death initially, in November 2017 a media report quoting Loya’s father and sisters fuelled suspicion about the circumstances surrounding his death, that “Loya’s death was not natural and he could have been murdered.”