MUMBAI: Late Father Stan Swamy's close associate Fr Frazer Mascarenhas has approached the Bombay High Court bench led by Justice Sambhaji Shinde, seeking to clear the Jesuit Priest's name from the Bhima-Koregaon violence case. The plea also seeks a proper enquiry under the guidelines of the Human Rights Commission, into the death of Swamy.
Mascarenhas along with senior counsel Mihir Desai submitted a note to the HC bench seeking a thorough court-monitored enquiry into the death of the 83 year old.
"It is strongly believed by those closest to him (Swamy) that his death was caused (in view of his age and past health conditions) due to his arrest and prison conditions including inadequate health facilities and health care. It is crucial, therefore, that the enquiry by a Judicial Magistrate looks into these aspects," the note stated.
To establish himself as the kin of Swamy, Mascarenhas has said, "Since Swamy was a priest, he had renounced the world and therefore his guardian would be the Jamshedpur Jesuit Province as per the Jesuit convention (since he was attached to the Ranchi Church and belonged to the Jamshedpur Province). The Jamshedpur Province has appointed Fr Mascarenhas as delegate and next of kin."
The note further details the proceedings initiated against Swamy and how the special NIA court has while rejecting the substantive bail has observed that 'the accusations against Swamy are prima facie true".
"Thus, there is a stigma which attaches to Swamy and will continue to be so attached unless these findings are set aside," the note reads.
The note further points out that the human right to dignity continues even after death. "The right to dignity and fair treatment under Article 21 of the Constitution of India is not only available to a living man but also to his body after this death," the note state while referring to a judgment of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
"Thus, Article 21 of the Constitution, equally applies to deceased persons and just as Swamy would have had a right to clear his name if he were alive, similarly those closest to him would have a similar right to clear his name," the note adds.