Lakhimpur Kheri case: SC says it does not have confidence in judicial commission constituted by UP govt to monitor probe by SIT

The Supreme Court has said that it does not have confidence in the judicial commission constituted by Uttar Pradesh government to monitor the probe by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the Lakhimpur Kheri incident. Farmers protesting against Farm Laws in Uttar Pradesh were mowed down by a four wheeler belonging to Ashish Mishra, son of Union Minister of State Ajay Mishra Teni.

The UP government had constituted a one man commission of retired Allahabad High Court judge Justice Pradeep Kumar Srivastava to monitor the investigation. The Bench of Chief Justice of India (CJI) NV Ramana and Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli said that the same needs to be done by a retired High Court judge from a different State.

The Apex Court suggested the names of Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain or Justice Ranjit Singh both retired judges from Punjab and Haryana High Court.

To ensure that there is no mix up of evidence in the case, the Bench said it is inclined to appoint a former judge of a different high court to monitor this probe. The Court was hearing a petition registered on the basis of letters seeking registration of an FIR in the matter as well as punishment to the guilty parties involved in the incident.

When the matter was taken up today, the Court noted that three FIRs have been registered, one regarding death of farmers and other regarding deaths of political leaders due to retaliatory violence and third one on death of a journalist.

The Court said that the probe in the three FIRs has to be independent of each other and evidence in one cannot be used to protect accused in another incident.

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