SC to hear plea for probe into judge BH Loya's death

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B H Loya was hearing the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case, and the Supreme Court sought response from Maharashtra government on pleas seeking an independent probe into it. "If the court goes ahead with the hearing, it may have implications before the high court", the Hindu reported Dave as saying.

Chief Justice Dipak Misra agreed to hear the case on Friday after lawyer Anita Shenoy moved the top court at the plea of Maharashtra-based journalist, Bandhuraj Sambhaji.

Loya had died of cardiac arrest in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, when he had gone to attend the wedding of a colleagues daughter.

Congress leader Tehseen Poonawalla, who had filed the petition, said just before his plea was to be heard this morning in the court of Justices Arun Mishra and M M Shantanagoudar, the senior advocate had pressurised him to withdraw the petition.

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The bench said it will look into the petitions but will also consider the objections raised. In his plea, Poonawala contended that the circumstances around the death of the judge were questionable and mysterious.

Earlier, as many as 470 members of Punjab and Haryana High Court Bar Association had written to the Chief Justice of India asking for an independent inquiry of Judge BH Loya. Shah was minister of state for home in the Modi government in Gujarat at the time of the encounter.

Relying on a report in the Caravan Magazine, the lawyers' association moved the Bombay High Court contending that Loya was under tremendous pressure while he presided over the alleged Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case.

The issue had come under the spotlight in November past year after media reports quoting his sister fuelled suspicion about the circumstances surrounding his death and its link to the Sohrabuddin case. He was the CBI judge hearing the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, which was transferred by the Supreme Court from Gujarat to Mumbai in September 2013.

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