Delhi HC seeks Centre’s stand on plea for SIT probe into Sunanda Pushkar’s death

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday sought to know the stand of the Centre on Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy’s plea for a court-monitored probe by the CBI-led SIT into the death of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda Pushkar.

A bench of Justices GS Sistani and PS Teji, who did not issue notice in the matter, has said that it needs to hear the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), the CBI and the Delhi Police on the plea.
The court has fixed the matter for hearing on July 20.

Swamy has alleged that “inordinate delay” has been caused in the investigation “which is a blot on the justice system”.

Pushkar was found dead in a suite of a five-star hotel in south Delhi on the night of January 17, 2014.

Swamy, who was arguing in person, submitted in the court that the investigation into Pushkar’s death is at the stage of FIR and no evidence has been recorded so far.

He along with advocate Ishkaran Singh Bhandari, who has filed the petition, alleged that many of the evidences in the case have been destroyed.

“This matter is of national and international interest as the victim was about to disclose about alleged corruption in cricket. She had also called for a press conference before her death to disclose about the same,” Swamy submitted.

He further alleged that the Congress MP was influencing investigation into the matter.

To this, the court replied, “Neither his (Tharoor’s) party is in power nor he is a minister anymore.”

It said that before passing any order it needs to hear the opposite parties, therefore, the Additional Solicitor General (representing MHA) should be informed about the matter before the next date of hearing.

The plea, which was filed last week, has sought setting up of a multi-disciplinary Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the Intelligence Bureau, the Enforcement Directorate, RAW, the Delhi Police and headed by the CBI to probe the case.

“The case referred to in this petition is an extreme example of the slow motion of the criminal justice process and the extent to which it can be subverted by the rich and influential,” the plea submitted.

“The fact that influential political personalities and their henchmen are involved presents an added dimension to the issue and raises questions on the efficacy of the existing systems and practices to counter the moves of such influential persons facing serious criminal charges,” it submitted.