The Supreme Court on Wednesday endorsed the Uttar Pradesh government’s suggestion that a former judge of the top court, justice B S Chauhan will head a Commission to probe the encounter involving gangster Vikas Dubey and other incidental events leading to his death
A former Allahabad high court judge Shashi Kant Aggarwal and UP’s former director general of police (DGP) K L Gupta and will also be members of the Commission.
A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court headed by CJI SA Bobde approved the names and asked the Commission to submit its report in two months. The report shall also be given to the State government as per Commission of Inquiry Act.
On Monday, the apex court had asked the UP government to consider appointing a retired Supreme Court judge and a former Director General of Police in a panel to probe the Dubey’s death in an encounter.
“The state government has contacted Justice Chauhan and taken his approval. He is willing to devote time despite Covid situation and travel to Kanpur and Allahabad, ” Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the bench as he shared the draft notification.
According to the terms of reference, the Commission will investigate not only the incident involving encounter of Vikas Dubey but also probe the inaction of authorities which led to the gangster being released on bail despite facing over 60 cases.
The bench had earlier held that this was the single most important factor that led to the incident in which Dubey was shot dead after he allegedly tried to escape and fired on policemen on July 10.
The Commission will also probe why no efforts were made to cancel Dubey’s bail. The encounter of the intervening night of July 2-3 in which eight policemen were killed, will also be probed.
“We do not want to tie the hands of the Commission by specifying the terms of reference. It should be kept as wide as possible,” the bench said.
The secretarial assistance for the Commission will be provided by Centre. The Court said that the Commission’s proceedings will not affect the trial of other accused in the case.