Hyderabad: Asking the police to explain what prompted them to open fire against CPI (ML) New Democracy leader Ponnam Lingaiah, the Telangana High Court has directed that a re-postmortem be conducted in the body.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Shameem Akther gave the order while dealing with a public interest litigation petition filed by Civil Liberties Committee president Prof. Gaddam Laxman, seeking a direction to the government to constitute an SIT to probe into the alleged fake encounter.
Lingaiah was shot dead in an alleged encou-nter early on Wednesday in the Rallagadda forest of Gundala mandal in Kothagudem district. Section 144 has been imposed after Wednesd-ay’s incidents when two members of the dalam who were nabbed by the police were freed by locals.
The bench directed the police to bring Linga-iah’s body to Hyderabad on Friday morning and ensure completion of the re-postmortem. It directed the superintendent of Gandhi Hospital to constitute a medical board with three experienced doctors to complete the re-postmortem by 6 pm and submit a report by August 5.
The bench directed the police to hand over the body Lingaiah’s family after completion of the re-postmortem.
Justice Chauhan asked the government and police what prompted them to open fire against Lingaiah. He asked if the victim was escaping from police custody, had used weapons against the police or was waging war against the state.
Additional advocate general J. Ramachandra Rao said Lingaiah worked for the CPI (ML) which was banned for waging war against the state government. He said the postmortem had been conducted, and the government was dealing with the case in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court.
Justice Chauhan observed. “Even if somebody is waging war against the state, procedure has to be followed.”
Earlier, Mr Verose Raghunath, counsel representing the petitioner, submitted that Lingaiah was an agriculturist and a tribal whose was working for the legitimate rights of tribals....