HC rejects PIL on intervening in Sunanda death probe

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New Delhi, Feb 11: The Delhi High Court Wednesday refused to entertain a PIL seeking its intervention in the probe into the mysterious death of Sunanda Pushkar, the wife of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor.

A division bench of Justice G. Rohini and Justice R.S Endlaw, after taking note of the submissions of the centre and the Delhi Police, and that an FIR has been registered, said it will not entertain the plea as the necessary steps have already been taken.

Sunanda Pushkar with Tharoor

Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain told the court that a five-member SIT team is investigating the case.

ASG said: "A five member SIT has been formed, they are investigating the matter. At this stage the investigation can't be interfered with. The issue can't be raised in a PIL."

The bench also questioned the locus standi of petitioner, saying: "It seems Publicity Interest Litigation."

"We are not entertaining this PIL. An FIR has been registered, and an investigation is going on...." said the bench.

The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed by NGO Anti Corruption Front, saying the investigating agency was biased in probing the case and there was no positive and constructive development in the case.

The NGO'a counsel argued that police had registered an FIR almost a year after the incident despite clear guidelines by the Supreme Court and high courts that on receiving information disclosing commission of a cognizable offence, the police should register an FIR without any delay.

"In the present matter, police registered an FIR almost after 342 days of the occurrence of the crime," he contended.

"Even the investigating agency found it is a clear case of murder but till date it is in dark. Even a long one year passed after the incident occurred in a five star hotel of the capital, no convincing conclusion has come out with regard to the accused persons who planned and executed the murder," the PIL stated.

Delhi Police have constituted a special investigative team to probe the death of Pushkar after registering an FIR in the case Jan 1 following Pushkar's third autopsy report by the AIIMS medical board.

Tharoor, a former UN diplomat and union minister in the previous Manmohan Singh-led government, has also been called for questioning by the probe agency.

Pushkar was found dead in a luxury hotel here Jan 17, 2014. Police have said she was poisoned.

IANS

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