The Supreme Court on Tuesday said that it may form a committee to investigate the killing of gangster Vikas Dubey in police custody last week, Bar and Bench reported. Dubey was the main accused in the murder of eight Uttar Pradesh policemen in a shootout in Kanpur earlier this month.
Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, while hearing petitions demanding an investigation into Dubey’s death, said that the court will do something similar to the Telangana case – a reference to the encounter of four men accused of raping and murdering a Hyderabad-based veterinary doctor in November. The top court had then set up a panel headed by Justice VS Sirpurkar to look into the case. The panel began its investigation in February and is yet to submit its report.
During Tuesday’s hearing, the top court said that it would not monitor the inquiry into Dubey’s killing. The chief justice added that the court was “extremely reluctant” to step into such cases. The Uttar Pradesh government has been given time till July 16 to inform the Supreme Court about the kind of committee it wants to set up for the investigation.
The state government on Sunday formed a judicial committee to investigate Dubey’s alleged nexus with the police. Retired Allahabad High Court judge Justice Shashi Kant Agarwal is the only member of the committee.
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Last week, the Adityanath-led government also formed a Special Investigation Team to probe the deaths of the eight policemen. The probe team will be headed by Uttar Pradesh Additional Chief Secretary Sanjay Bhoosreddy. It will submit its report in the case to the state government by July 31.
Dubey was arrested in Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain city on Thursday for the murder of eight policemen in a shootout in Kanpur’s Bikru village on July 3. He was killed in police custody on Friday morning. Dubey had more than 60 criminal cases against him, including murder and extortion. He was arrested previously on many occasions but was not convicted in any of the cases.
The Special Task Force of the Uttar Pradesh Police had claimed that the car transporting Dubey overturned after the driver attempted to avoid a herd of cows and buffaloes but a video shared on social media also showed that Dubey was in a Tata Safari when the convoy went through a toll booth on its way to Kanpur and not a TUV 300 – the vehicle which was found overturned. The police also claimed that Dubey “attempted to flee by snatching the pistol” of a policeman, similar to what the police in Telangana had said about the four rape-accused.