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‘Political parties use court as forum’, says SC while hearing petition on death of BJP leader in West Bengal

Representing the West Bengal government in the case, senior advocate Kapil Sibal contended that the apex court must examine if a member of a political party should be allowed to file a PIL.

SNS | New Delhi |

The Supreme Court on Monday rebuked the political parties and said they use the court as a forum.

Court’s remarks came when a bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde and Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant was hearing an impleadment application filed by the BJP leader Gaurav Bhatia in the death of Dulal Kumar, a BJP leader in West Bengal. Bhatia seeks a CBI investigation into the matter.

The matter is of June 2018 when Kumar’s body was found hanging from a power transmission tower. Based on the post-mortem report, the police found it to be a case of suicide but the BJP alleged that the death was a political murder.

Representing the West Bengal government in the case, senior advocate Kapil Sibal contended that the apex court must examine if a member of a political party should be allowed to file a PIL. Countering Sibal’s claim, Bhatia said he is representing the brother of the deceased.

“We are conscious that opposition parties are also using forum of this court…it goes to both sides,” the Chief Justice replied. The response came from the CJI as Bhatia was questioning the closure report filed by the police, and Kapil Sibal termed his allegations baseless.

Kapil Sibal told the court that a board comprising of five medical doctors had concluded that Kumar committed suicide and said the petition has been filed on the basis of newspaper reports.

The police had filed a closure report on the matter and pinned the reason for suicide as extramarital affair.

He also contended that there was no external injury n Kumar’s body. However, Bhatia said the family members dispute this on which Sibal replied 73 witnesses have been examined in the matter.

The apex court also noted that the team of medical experts consisted of specialists who examined the cause of death.

Bhatia insisted that the ruling political party in the state had applied pressure on which the Chief Justice asked him to refrain from making such statements.

after hearing both the sides, the court issued notice to the West Bengal government on the application seeking CBI investigation. The matter will be listed after four weeks.