'Dead' murder case witness appears before Bihar court

The additional sessions judge-cum-special judge of the court, Punit Kumar Garg served the notice to CBI and directed it to submit its reply before June 20, which is the next date of hearing.

PTIUpdated: Saturday, June 04, 2022, 10:46 AM IST
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A witness in the journalist Rajdeo Ranjan murder case who was declared dead by CBI, presented herself before the Muzaffarpur court | Photo: Representative Image

A witness in the journalist Rajdeo Ranjan murder case who was declared dead by CBI, which is investigating the case, Friday presented herself before the Muzaffarpur court, which issued a show cause to the investigating agency for submitting a false death report.

The additional sessions judge-cum-special judge of the court, Punit Kumar Garg served the notice to CBI and directed it to submit its reply before June 20, which is the next date of hearing.

Rajdeo Ranjan, a journalist who worked with Hindi daily 'Hindustan' was shot dead in 2016 by a group of five miscreants on his way home in Siwan.

Earlier, CBI had sought summons for the examination of witness Badami Devi, which the court had issued.

However, on May 24 the central probe agency declared her dead and also submitted her death verification report before the court.

Badami Devi appeared before the court on Friday with her documents and affidavit.

"I have been staying at my Kasera Toli residence in Siwan. I was made a witness in the case but no CBI official met me. However, the CBI declared me dead, which I came to know through newspapers. It is a conspiracy," she said in her affidavit.

"The act of the premier institution of investigation appears to be suspicious. Now there is no hesitation to say that CBI has done this kind of work in connivance with another witness. It is submitted that CBI is playing a big game to implicate falsely the accused persons, especially Vijay Kumar and Azharuddin Beig," the petitioners' counsel Sharad Sinha told the court.

CBI's act is "strange and shocking", he told reporters outside the court.

The Bihar government had on May 17, 2016, recommended the journalist murder case to CBI for a thorough probe. CBI registered the case on September 15, 2016.

It had quizzed late RJD MP Mohammad Shahabuddin in connection with the case. Shahabuddin had, however, claimed that he was in jail when the incident took place.

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