The Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court Tuesday directed UP government to file a status report in the ongoing probe in the alleged murder case of freelance journalist Jagendra Singh, in which Minister of State Ram Murti Singh Verma, his aides and five policemen have been booked.
Hearing a PIL seeking directions for a CBI probe into case, a vacation division bench of Justices Shri Narain Shukla and Pratyush Kumar, also directed the government counsel to file its counter affidavit in the case by June 24. The PIL, filed by NGO We The People through its general secretary and lawyer Prince Lenin on June 11, has also sought adequate compensation to the deceased scribe’s family.
On behalf of the government, Additional Advocate General Bulbul Godiyal raised preliminary objections regarding maintainability of the PIL. She contended that the FIR was lodged in this case on June 9 and the PIL was filed two days later “only for cheap publicity”.
She also submitted that a probe was going on and no one has come forward to question it except the petitioner, hence the PIL was liable to be dismissed.
She sought a week’s time to file a counter affidavit, which was granted. The court fixed June 24 as the next date of hearing and directed the AAG to disclose the status of the probe by this date.
Singh was allegedly set on fire by policemen on June 1 during a raid at his Shahjahanpur home.