Madras HC to monitor probe into death of Chennai lawyer’s son: SC – The Hindu

Chennai News

CB-CID must file status reports of 2011 case once in every four months before the High Court, says Supreme Court

CB-CID must file status reports of 2011 case once in every four months before the High Court, says Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on Friday brought the investigation into the death of the son of a Chennai-based human right lawyer 11 years ago directly under the watchful eye of the Madras High Court.

A Bench led by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud directed the CB-CID (Metro) team of the Tamil Nadu Police, which is investigating the case, to file status reports once in every four months before the High Court, starting from August 1, 2022.

The investigation would moreover be monitored by the DIG (Local Range), who would also be a signatory in the status reports to be filed in the High Court.

The top court said the High Court could issue directions to ensure that the investigation was taken to its logical conclusion.

By giving back the High Court the reins of the case, the Bench said it had set aside an earlier decision of the High Court to close the case and modified the direction of the High Court to the CB-CID team to file its reports with the magistrate court concerned.

The decision came on a petition filed by human rights lawyer R. Sankarasubbu, represented by senior advocate R. Basant and advocate Rahul Shyam Bhandari.

Mr. Sankarasubbu’s 24-year-old son S. Sathish Kumar, a law graduate, died in June 2011. The death had caused a furore, especially among lawyers.

Rollercoaster ride ride

The investigation of the case has in the past years seen a rollercoaster train of developments.

The case was initially probed by the State Police and then handed over to the CBI in 2012. The CBI had filed a report concluding that the case was one of suicide.

The Madras High Court subsequently set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) led by former CBI Director R.K. Raghavan. The SIT, after inquiring into the death, filed a report with the findings that the young man was actually murdered. However, the SIT could not zero in on the persons involved in the alleged murder.

The High Court, on the basis of the SIT report, handed the case over to the CB-CID on February 4 last year.

Mr. Sankarasubbu, early in 2022, moved the Supreme Court alleging that the CB-CID had not filed a single report since February 2021 even though the High Court had directed it to file quarterly status reports before the court.