Supreme Court doesn’t entertain Sanjiv Bhatt’s plea

New Delhi : The Supreme Court Friday declined to entertain a plea by suspended Gujarat police officer Sanjiv Bhatt seeking the reversal of a state government order withdrawing a revision petition in an alleged case of custodial death.

An apex court bench of Justice B.S Chauhan and Justice T.S. Thakur however permitted Bhatt to withdraw his petition with liberty to pursue an independent revision petition before the Gujarat High Court.

During an agitation in 1990, some people were arrested in Jamnagar district where Bhatt was posted as additional superintendent of police. Upon their release, one of them was admitted ih hospital where he died after eight days.

The crime branch of the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) carried out a probe and gave a clean chit to the Indian Police Service (IPS) officer and other policemen.

But the magistrate court did not accept the findings of the crime branch and initiated criminal proceedings against Bhatt and other police personnel.

The Gujarat government then took the position that its officials had acted in discharge of their official responsibilities and filed a revision petition in the session court in 1996.

The state government later withdrew the revision petition, thereby exposing Bhatt to prosecution.

Bhatt contended that the government was doing all this to victimise him as he had accused Chief Minister Narendra Modi of complacity in the 2002 communal riots in the state.

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