The bench orally observed that it is prima facie of the view that the two incidents i.e. the murder of Sheikh and the consequent massacre of nearly 8 persons are ‘inter-linked’.
Kolkata: The Calcutta High Court Friday asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to take up the investigation of the murder of Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Bhadu Sheikh on March 21. Earlier, it had bestowed upon the central agency the probe into the violence that broke out in Birbhum after the murder of Sheikh. The violence had led to the murder of eight persons, who were reportedly burned along with their home.
A Bench comprising Chief Justice Prakash Shrivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj on Friday orally observed that it is prima facie of the view that the two incidents i.e. the murder of Sheikh and the consequent massacre of nearly 8 persons are ‘inter-linked’.
In its order, the bench of Chief Justice Prakash Shrivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj noted, “The Report submitted by the CBI before this Court today prima facie suggests that brutal incident of burning and killing at Bogtui village is the direct fall out of killing of Bhadu Sk son of Marfat Sk of village Bogtui at 8.30 P.M. on the same day. It also suggests that the incident is outcome of the rivalry amongst the members of two groups in the village and that burning of the houses resulting into death of 8 persons was retaliatory plan.”
It further noted, “Both the incidents took place within a gap of about 2 hours. Material placed on record prima facie suggests close relationship and linkage between the two incidents. The incidents are alleged to be result of political rivalry. The allegation of the applicants that both incidents form part of the common conspiracy and continuous cause of action cannot be ignored.”
Before transferring the case to the CBI, the court observed, “It is also worth noting if one agency investigates both the incidents then not only it will be easier to unearth the truth but it will also facilitate trial before the same competent Court.”
“The CBI is directed to investigate the murder case of Bhadu Sk along with the investigation in the case of Bogtui house burning and murder case. CBI is directed to file further report of investigation in both the cases on the next date of hearing,” the court said.
On March 21, after Bhadu Sheikh was killed by miscreants who hurled bombs at him, his supporters went on a rampage and set afire shops and houses, including that of the alleged accused, resulting in the death of eight persons, including women and children. The death toll now stands at nine.
A Special Investigation Team (SIT) was initially formed to probe the case but subsequently, the court transferred it to the CBI.