New Delhi: Documents related to the death of Judge BH Loya, including postmortem details and a 50-page intelligence report, were submitted today to the Supreme Court, which is hearing petitions asking for an independent investigation into the judge’s death after his family raised questions in November.
Maharashtra, which submitted the confidential documents in a sealed cover, was asked by the court to share them with no one but the petitioners – activist Tehseen Poonawalla and a journalist.
“It is a matter where they (petitioners) should know everything,” said Justices Arun Mishra and MM Shantanagoudar.
The state government is going through the report to see what is safe to put out in the public domain. The postmortem report has drawn interest after Judge Loya’s family members, quoted by the newsmagazine Caravan as raising questions on whether the death was natural, alleged that his clothes were bloodstained.
Judge Loya, 48, died of a heart attack on December 1, 2014, while attending a wedding in Nagpur. At the time, he was handling the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case in which BJP president Amit Shah was an accused. Mr Shah was discharged by the judge who replaced Judge Loya.
The police and a fellow judge who was with Judge Loya have rubbished the idea of foul play.
The Nagpur police reasserted that the judge died of a heart attack and “no probe was necessary”.
The Judge Loya case was among the cases that provoked a virtual rebellion against Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra by four judges who rank after him.
The judges were critical of the Judge Loya case petitions being assigned to Justice Arun Mishra, whose objectivity had been questioned in court.
On Friday, they met with the Chief Justice and voiced their disapproval on the Loya case before resorting to the extraordinary step of calling a press conference. They talked about the allotment of sensitive cases to judges “without rationale”.
After the judges’ press conference revived buzz around the case, Judge Loya’s son Anuj called the media and denied that there was anything suspicious in the death; he said it was being politicized.