Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Friday informed the Bombay High Court that it has withdrawn an order passed by it appointing advocate Dinesh Tiwari as special public prosecutor in the Jiah Khan death case.
Following this statement, Justice Anil Menon disposed of the CBI’s petition challenging the state government’s decision to appoint a special public prosecutor in the case. The CBI’s contention was that since it was the prosecuting agency in the case, the government cannot appoint a special prosecutor.
The CBI has booked actor Sooraj Pancholi on charges of abetting the suicide of Jiah Khan, who was his girlfriend at the time of the alleged incident. In June, the high court had asked the Advocate General to appear in the matter before it and also asked the trial court not to proceed with the trial until further orders. Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbhakoni today told Justice Menon that the contentions raised by the CBI in its petition were correct and the order of appointment of Dinesh Tiwari as special prosecutor stands cancelled and withdrawn.
The high court then disposed of the petition, which means the lower court can go ahead with the trial. Jiah had allegedly committed suicide on June 3, 2013. Sooraj was arrested for allegedly abetting her suicide on June 10, 2013, but released on July 2 the same year after the high court granted bail to him.
The case was transferred to the CBI by the high court in July 2014 on Jiah’s mother Rabia Khan’s petition that police was not probing it properly. However, when the CBI filed a charge sheet in the case and booked Sooraj on abetment charges, Rabia again petitioned the court seeking that a Special Investigation Team (SIT) be set up to probe the case afresh. Rabia was against the CBI’s concurrence with the findings of Mumbai police that it was a case of suicide and not homicide.