A former Bombay High Court judge has written an open letter to Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, calling the inquiry into the 2009 Mangaluru pub attack “tainted”. He has asked him to pass a suo-moto order for a time-bound re-investigation, The News Minute reported on Wednesday.

In January 2009, dozens of activists allegedly belonging to the Sri Ram Sene, a Hindutva outfit in Karnataka, attacked women at a pub in Mangaluru claiming they had been violating traditional Indian values. On March 12, a court in Karnataka had acquitted all 31 accused in the case, including Sri Ram Sene chief Pramod Muthalik.

In his letter dated March 22, Judge Michael F Saldanha said he had written to the chief justice on behalf of all those who were hurt by the acquittal of the accused. Saldanha said the police and the prosecution should have pursued the case “ruthlessly”, and that a mere appeal would be insufficient.

“The entire investigation is tainted, where the case is conducted by a like-minded prosecutor who produced next to no evidence, and where the court is presided over by a passive judicial officer who does not use the law given powers to ensure that there is no miscarriage of justice,” the former Bombay High Court judge said.

In addition to a re-investigation, Saldanha demanded that the principal district judge of Mangaluru be ordered to look into why the trial went on for nine years. He also said that the Karnataka government’s Law Department should be directed to submit a report to the High Court on why the public prosecutor had failed to submit evidence in the case, including videos.

Saldanha also said that Karnataka Director General of Police Neelamani Raju should submit a report to the High Court on the investigators and police officers responsible for the “failure of justice” in the case.