HC dismisses PIL seeking judicial probe into Handwara incident

Excelsior Correspondent
Srinagar, May 4: High Court today upheld the constitution of Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the civilian killings in Handwara and molestation of girl last month and rejected the plea of conducting judicial probe by sitting High Court judge.
The court dismissed the PIL seeking constitution of SIT headed by the police officer to the rank of Inspector General of Police and judicial probe into the molestation and civilian killings in Handwara last month.
“…..Further, there is no reason for this court to suspect the police/SIT would not do what is required of them under the Code of Criminal Procedure to achieve the aforesaid objects”, said the Division Bench comprising of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Tashi Rabstan.
“Even if, for the sake of arguments, a judicial probe is ordered, any report that may ultimately be made by such judicial authority would not be more than a recommendation”, DB adding “and such authority for  formulation of such recommendation would again be dependent upon the very same police agency”.
Court with regard to SIT which has been constituted by IGP said the petitioner (Bar Association) itself seems to be keen to ensure that the investigation is conducted by a team headed by a credible police officer of repute.
“The IGP himself has constituted a SIT headed by an officer of the rank of DIG and it is nobody’s case that the officers constituting the SIT or the DIG concerned are, in any way, less reputed”, reads the judgment.
Court also passed remarks for makings doubts on reputation against any police officer and added that in absence of any cogent material to the contrary, it would not be justifiably possible for anybody, including this court ‘to raise a finger against any police officer of his being less reputed’.
Court on issue of alleged videography of the girl in Police Station and circulation of such video gave liberty to aggrieved person to seek compensation in appropriate proceedings.
Court also made it clear that it is not such type of case where this court should exercise its inherent powers as the Government has already taken steps under law in this regard. “We are of the considered view that this is not a case where this court would need to take any action in exercise of its inherent powers, for, the state and its functionaries have already taken the required steps envisaged by law”, DB Said.

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