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Nakkeeran Gopal's petition dismissed

Written by: Staff
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Chennai, Apr 13 (UNI) The Madras High Court today dismissed a petition filed by Nakkeeran Editor R R Gopal seeking a direction to the Tamil Nadu Home Secretary to transfer investigation of a POTA case against him from the CBCID, Coimbatore Camp, to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

A division bench, comprising, Mr Justice M Karpaga Vinayagam and Mr Justice A R Ramalingam, dismissed the petition.

Mr Gopal also sought a direction to the CBI to probe circumstances in which a fresh case was registered in 2001 by the Sathyamangalam Police and he was arrested, mode of arrest, recovery of arms and a pamphlet, registration of a fresh case by CBCID in Chennai in 2003, alteration to POTA by CBCID and fresh recovery made in the forest during police custody after the POTA case. He also alleged torture, harassment and human rights violation by the CBCID police and jail authorities.

The bench said investigation of an offence was the prrerogative of the police, whose powers in that field were unfettered, so long as it was legitimately exercised.

The IA's action must be demonstrably proved malafide for such consideration.

The bench said it was clear that Gopal sought not only transfer of investigation to the CBI but also wanted a direction from this court to the CBI as to how it had to investigate, what were the aspects to be investigated and how earlier cases had been registered against him. This comprehensive prayer was beyond the scope of this petition. None of the points raised by gopal would be sufficient to hold there was prima facie case for transfer of investigation to the CBI.

Also, proceedings before the POTA Review Committee had to begin and the trial would be subject to the Committee's decision, the court said.

''If the committee came to the conclusion that there was adequate material for the trial, it would be open to Gopal to cross-examine the investigating officer and elicit from him circumstances or grounds to throw doubt on the impartiality of the officer. If such things were established, the trial court might look at whether the probe and evidence collected by the investigating agency was malafide and whether it would materially affect the result of the trial,'' the bench added.

The bench said ''therefore we do not find any ground to order fresh investigation by the CBI. The trial court, subject to orders of the Review Committee, can allow both parties to adduce their evidence to establish their respective pleas, in which event the trial court may consider those material and decide the case, uninfluenced by any of the observations made by this court.''

UNI 

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