Court rejects plea for CBI probe; Doctor cremated (Roundup)

June 24th, 2011 - 10:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, June 24 (IANS) The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court Friday rejected a plea for a CBI probe into the mysterious death of deputy chief medical officer Y.S. Sachan in Lucknow district jail two days ago.

His family members, who had been pressing for a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the death, decided to go ahead with his cremation following the court’s refusal.

Sachan was cremated at a local electric crematorium Friday afternoon. Significantly, the local administration and the police helped the family carry out the last rites of the doctor, who was found dead in a toilet of the Lucknow district jail Wednesday evening. He had been lodged in the jail after being arrested for the murder of his immediate superior, chief medical officer B.P. Singh in April last.

However, his family members have not yet given up on their demand for a CBI probe.

“We are prepared to fight for a CBI inquiry right up to the highest court in the land in case the chief minister too turns down my plea for entrusting the case to the CBI,” Sachan’s wife Malti Sachan told reporters.

Earlier in the day, she shot off a letter to Chief Minister Mayawati seeking her intervention for a CBI probe. Drawing the chief minister’s attention to the multiple wounds reported in the post-mortem report, Malti Sachan felt, “there was more than ample prima facie evidence that Dr. Sachan was killed essentially because he would have spilled the beans once his statement was recorded for evidence”.

A post-mortem report on Sachan carried several indicators of foul play, but the Uttar Pradesh government has stuck to its theory that he committed suicide.

His post-mortem report mentioned “excessive bleeding” as the cause of death and talked about nine wounds on the doctor’s body, yet the officials ruled out murder.

Taking suo moto cognizance of the mysterious death of deputy chief medical officer Y.S. Sachan in a Lucknow district jail, the state Human Rights Commission (SHRC) Friday issued notices to the Uttar Pradesh government returnable July 12.

The Uttar Pradesh SHRC issued notices to the state government’s five senior officials, including the chief secretary, principal secretary (home), additional director general (prisons), Lucknow’s district magistrate and Deputy Inspector General/Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP).

“The commission has asked the government whether Sachan’s death is a suicide or a murder. The commission will take up the case for hearing July 14,” officials said.

“According to the post-mortem report, eight of the nine wounds on Sachan’s body were caused by a sharp-edged blade, while one was a mark left around his neck,” Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar had told reporters.

He said: “While two wounds were found on his neck, two each were on the right and left elbows, one on the left thigh and one on his wrist.”

The cabinet secretary sought to suggest that Sachan first tried to strangulate himself using his own belt but when that failed, he used a blade to cut his veins at different places following which he bled to death.

“Prima facie, it is a case of suicide, but I would not like to draw any definite conclusion, since a judicial probe is already underway,” he said.

Sachan was facing charges of not only masterminding Singh’s murder but for also giving money for what was officially termed as “contract killing”.

Sachan’s death is the third in succession over alleged bungling in National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) funds in Uttar Pradesh.

Before Singh was gunned down during his morning walk just outside his residence in Lucknow’s posh Gomati Nagar locality April 2, his predecessor Vinod Arya too was shot dead by masked motorcyclists, just as he stepped out of his home for his morning walk in October 2010.

Award of huge contracts for supply of goods and equipment under the centrally-funded NRHM and large-scale financial bungling were officially stated to be the cause behind both the murders.

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