The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a petition filed by the wife of former police officer Sanjiv Bhatt challenging the inquiry against him in connection with a 22-year-old case, reported Live Law. “The court cannot interfere with ongoing investigations,” said the bench observing that the petitioner, Shweta Bhatt, has recourse to other remedies.
The Crime Investigation Department of the Gujarat Police arrested Bhatt on September 5 for allegedly planting drugs on a lawyer who was held from Palanpur in Banaskantha district in 1996. Bhatt, who was the district superintendent of police at the time, and seven others – including former policemen attached with the Banaskantha Police – were then questioned.
Last month, the Supreme Court directed the Gujarat government to respond to Shweta Bhatt’s allegations that her husband was being prevented from approaching the top court.
Bhatt is a vocal critic of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He has claimed to have been at a meeting held in the aftermath of the 2002 Godhra incident where Modi, the chief minister of Gujarat at the time, allegedly said Hindus should be allowed to vent their anger. On February 27, 2002, 58 people, mostly Hindu pilgrims, died when four coaches of a train were allegedly set on fire in Gujarat’s Godhra station. The incident triggered retaliatory attacks on Muslims across Gujarat. The violence claimed more than 1,000 lives, the majority of them Muslim. More than 150,000 people were displaced from homes to which they have still not been able to return.