The Supreme Court today asked the CBI to proceed with its probe into the murder of 'Dainik Hindustan' journalist Rajdev Ranjan.
It also asked the Bihar police to provide protection to his family that has claimed threat to life from RJD leader and gangster Mohammed Shahabuddin.
Bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra also sought response of Shahabuddin, Bihar's health minister and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad's son Tej Pratap Yadav and Bihar government on a petition by Ranjan's wife who has also sought transfer of the case from Siwan in Bihar to Delhi.
“It is brought to our notice that CBI has not commenced the investigation. In view of that, we direct that the CBI may proceed with the investigation but not finalize it and shall file the status report before this Court on October 10, 2016.
The Superintendent of Police, Siwan District shall provide police protection to the petitioner and her family.
The concerned Station House Officer of Nagar Thana shall also see that the protection is given. We have directed both the Superintendent of Police and the Station House Officer so that the petitioner, a lady in distress, shall feel protected”, said the bench
Counsel for Ranjan's wife Asha Ranjan argued: “CBI has not even started its probe into the case due to political influence and fear of Shahabuddin as the state machinery was protecting the history sheeter, against whom there were 58 criminal cases according to Bihar government's 2014 affidavit in the apex court”.
When the counsel said the case should be transferred to Delhi, Justice Misra said CBI shall continue the investigation there.
“Eventually, after hearing them, we may consider whether to transfer the case. There is no trial as of now. Let them investigate”, said the bench.
The counsel told the court that five persons were arrested by Bihar Police in connection with the case, but the two alleged sharp shooters of Shahabuddin were not.
CBI did not dare to take up the investigation in the case due to fear of Shahabuddin. Two sharp shooters, Md Kaif and Mohd Javed, were seen with Shahabuddin and Health Minister of Bihar Tej Pratap Yadav. Entire state machinery is protecting Shahabuddin, he alleged.
Kaif surrendered before a Siwan court two days ago. He said that Rajdev, a journalist, had written various stories about the criminal deeds of Shahabuddin and after RJD-JD(U) alliance came to power in Bihar, he was shot dead.
Recently the trial judge, who had convicted Shahabuddin in one of the case, has requested for transfer from Siwan to Patna.
Read the order here.