At a time when the tragic demise of Sushant Singh Rajput continues to grab the headlines, the Palghar lynching case has been brushed under the carpet. Earlier, the Maharashtra government was pushed into a corner as Arnab Goswami led the charge and asked some uncomfortable questions to the state government. It appears that the quest for justice in the case will be a long drawn battle as one of the petitioners seeking justice for the Sadhus, Shashank Shekhar Jha has accused the Maharashtra government of trying to derail the investigation.
Earlier in April, the country was left in shock after the brutal lynching of two Sadhus and their driver by hundreds of people in Palghar that too in the presence of police personnel who acted as mere bystanders.
The sadhus, Kalpvrush Giri, 70 and Sushil Giri, 35, and driver Nilesh Telgade, 30, were dragged out of their vehicle and thrashed by the mob who were on their way to attend the last rites of their guru Mahant Shri Ram Giri in Surat.
While the Palghar lynchings case no longer hogs the limelight, the quest for justice remains. Earlier this month, the Supreme Court after clubbing all the PILs together asked the Maharashtra government to apprise it of the inquiry and action taken against the police personnel who did a disservice to their uniform by failing to stop the lynching. The bench asked the state government to file a charge sheet before it. The bench also asked Maharashtra to file an affidavit and posted the matter after three weeks.
One of the petitioners in the Palghar case, Shashank Shekhar Jha is demanding a CBI enquiry as he feels that the state government is attempting to derail the investigation.
“They (Maharashtra government) have refused to share the chargesheet with the petitioners. Petitioners are still demanding it,” Jha told TFIPOST. He added, “The chargesheets, including the third one were to be brought on record in court but it has still not happened.”
Jha further told TFIPOST, “On 6th of August, the court had asked for an affidavit citing action against the policemen involved.” Yesterday, the Maharashtra government three weeks after the SC order, sacked 3 cops who didn’t stop the mob from killing the trio.
Assistant sub-inspector Ravi Salunkhe and constable Naresh Dhodi have been compulsory retired while Assistant police inspector Anandrao Kale has been dismissed with immediate effect.
However, Jha feels that this is just hogwash as he claimed, “There were 15-18 police officials.” He added, “According to the Police FIR, 400-500 people were present. Some media also said 2000 were part of the mob. How did they gather like this during a complete lockdown?”
According to DNA, a local Palghar court granted default bail to 28 accused after no charge sheet was filed against the accused in the specified 90 days. Out of the 28, only 10 were freed as the remaining 18 featured in the third CID chargesheet.
Earlier a Zee News report had suggested that the seers were killed for political reasons and Christian missionaries supported by left, NCP are behind the Palghar lynching.
In May, Times Now disclosed an “Ultra-leftist” link to the lynching and its report further backed the claims that the lynching wasn’t a spontaneous one. Times Now also reported that the prime accused in the case, happens to be a CPI(M) gram panchayat member.
The media house also accused the FIR which stated, “The modus operandi by cutting trees and placing boulders to obstruct movement is also a common stratagem used by Naxalites against their preys.”
#Breaking | Palghar truth revealed, TIMES NOW follow up the investigation. 'Ultra Left link' to lynching emerges as the main accused belongs to the Left. F.I.R reveals the 'criminal conspiracy'.
TIMES NOW's Aruneel with details. pic.twitter.com/3v8rxrvQkZ
— TIMES NOW (@TimesNow) May 6, 2020
Shashank Shekhar Jha continues to demand a CBI inquiry into the case as he also pointed out that the Palghar lynchings case is mired in an apparent conflict of interest.
“There is something called a principle of natural justice. There should be no bias during the investigation. In this case, CID Maharashtra is doing the investigation, which comes under Maharashtra Police. So there will be departmental bias which violates the principle of natural justice,” said Jha.
He also said that the media has not been able to focus on this matter enough because of the Sushant case taking up most of their airtime. It remains to be seen whether the Supreme Court orders a CBI probe into the Palghar lynching case.