Hearing the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed in the Lakhimpur Kheri Violence Case, the Supreme Court has directed the UP government to ensure the safety of all the eyewitnesses in the case.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday heard the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed in the Lakhimpur Kheri Violence Case and directed the state government to ensure the safety of all the eyewitnesses in the case.
Along with this, the court said that the statements of the witnesses should be recorded before the magistrate at the earliest. The next hearing of the case will be on November 8. Let us inform you that eight people, including four farmers and a journalist, were killed in this violence.
The court also directed the UP government
A bench of Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justice Surya Kant and Justice Hima Kohli also directed the Uttar Pradesh government to record the statements of other witnesses in the case under section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). "We direct the concerned District Judge to entrust the recording of evidence under Section 164 CrPC to the nearest Judicial Magistrate," the bench said.
Statements of 30 witnesses have been recorded: Harish Salve
Senior advocates Harish Salve and Garima Prasad appeared in the court on behalf of the Uttar Pradesh government. Harish Salve told the court that the statements of 30 witnesses have been recorded before the magistrate, out of which 23 are eye-witnesses. There are some left, which have to be told.
Only 23 eyewitnesses found: Supreme Court
To this the bench asked that thousands of farmers were present during the rally in Lakhimpur, but you got only 23 eyewitnesses till now? After this, Harish Salve said that by giving a public advertisement, we have asked that all the eyewitnesses should come forward. Along with this, attention has also been paid to all mobile videos and videography in the incident. The Chief Justice said that every aspect and possibility should be explored and the investigation should be carried forward.
Action should be taken on the complaint of the victim: SC
Advocate Arun Bhardwaj, appearing for the wife of one of the deceased Shyam Sundar, told the court that the police is not taking any action on the complaint of my client, even though it recognizes the three accused. On this, the CJI asked Harish Salve to look into the matter. Harish Salve told the court that Shyam Sundar is also an accused in this case and also a victim. The CJI ordered that action be taken on the complaint of the victim, Ruby Devi. Also, the state government should present a status report on the death of Shyam Sundar and the journalist.
Supreme Court had earlier also reprimanded
The bench asked Salve to apprise the "forensic" laboratories of his concerns regarding preparation of the report of "electronic" evidence. Meanwhile, the top court directed the state government to file a report in respect of two complaints related to the lynching case of the journalist. The bench said that the state is directed to file separate replies in these matters. The Supreme Court had said on October 20 that the investigation into the Lakhimpur Kheri violence should not be an "endless story". At the same time, while reprimanding the Uttar Pradesh government, it was said that the court felt that the state police was working at a slow pace. Instructions were also given to provide protection to the witnesses.