The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a plea by Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) leader Bimal Gurung, seeking transfer of cases lodged by West Bengal police against him and other GJM members “to any independent investigation agency”. “Although as a principle, there is no fetter on an accused to move a Court of Law for transfer of investigation, but on the facts of this case…we do not think it to be a fit case where this Court may exercise jurisdiction under Article 32 to transfer the cases en masse to an independent agency,” a bench of Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan said, turning down his plea. The court noted that the “present case cannot be said to be a case of individual’s persecution by the State authority.”
Referring to violence in Darjeeling during agitation for a separate Gorkhaland, the bench said, “The State is obliged to maintain law and order and to protect life and property of the citizens. It has to take necessary steps to contain such agitation and restore the peace.” It added that “the cases lodged in the FIR submitted at the instance of the Police or other complainants cannot be discarded on the specious pleas that they have been lodged due to bias of the State and with the intent to persecute the petitioner.” “It is very easy to make allegations of bias against a person but it is difficult to substantiate the same,” the order pointed out.