Legal tangles halt hearing of key CBI cases
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For nearly a year, court hearings in some of the crucial cases being probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) have not moved an inch. The reason being a notification issued by the state government on August 17 last year calling for the trials of the CBI cases in West Midnapore, East Midnapore and Nadia districts to be shifted to the CBI court at Sessions Court in Kolkata. Following which, the CBI approached the Calcutta High Court to transfer the trials of the Netai killings, Jnaneswari train accident and Choto-Angaria killings from Midnapore court to the CBI court in Kolkata. With the Calcutta High Court still hearing the CBI pleas and counter petitions, there has been a stay in the proceedings of the trials in the district courts.
Take for example, the Netai killings. On January 7, 2011 nine people were killed allegedly by the CPM goons in Netai village in West Midnapore district. The CBI took over the investigation on the direction of the High Court and filed the chargesheet in Jhargram court on April 4 naming 20 people and arresting 12 of them. The case was later transferred to the Additional Sessions Court in Midnapore. When the framing of charges was pending in the midnapore court, the CBI approached the High Court to transfer the trial to CBI court in Kolkata.
Two months ago, the High Court gave the nod to transfer the case to CBI's Kolkata court, but Abani Bhusan Singh, one of the accused, filed a petition in the High Court challenging the state government's notification on transferring the cases. On Tuesday, the High Court directed the CBI to file an affidavit in three weeks and the case will come up for hearing in November. Till then, the trial of Netai killings has been stayed.
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