6-member panel submits report on Patiala House court violence to SC

One of its members Rajeev Dhawan alleged \"collusion\" between police and the attackers.

New Delhi: The 6-member committee of senior lawyers, which rushed to the Patiala House courts to report on violence, submitted its report to the Supreme Court on Thursday even as one of its members Rajeev Dhawan alleged "collusion" between police and the attackers.

The report was submitted in a sealed envelope to the bench of Justice J Chelameswar and Justice A M Sapre but the Delhi Police counsel Ajit K Sinha, who was part of the lawyers team, refused to sign it without reading it.

After a bunch of lawyers in open defiance of the apex court orders attacked JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar and some journalists, the court deputed the lawyers team including Dhawan, Kapil Sibal, Dushyant Dave and Haren Rawal to report on the ground situation at the Patiala House complex.

Sinha said that he was asked by Rawal, former additional Solicitor General to sign the report which he declined saying he would only do so after fully reading it.

"I said I can't sign without reading the report. He (Raval) said you sign it," Sinha told a Bench comprising Justices J Chelameswar and A M Sapre.

His response came after Raval told the bench that "he said he will not see it and not sign." Raval termed Sinha's words as "too scandalous".

Raval, who placed the report in sealed cover the report along with the pen drive containing mobile clip of committee's visit to Patiala House court complex, said other five members of the panel--Dhawan, Dushyant Dave and advocate Prashant Bhushan and A D N Rao--have signed it.

Dhawan told the media outside the court that "I have no difficulty in my mind, there is police collusion. As we went inside, we were told that somebody who was not allowed by the Supreme Court to enter the court, that person entered, went out.

"Registrar General of the High Court said 'please stop that man, please arrest him'. There were 8-10 policemen but they didn't arrest him. If this is not collusion, I don't know what is."

Dhawan said police have a duty but as long as they were protecting people politically that duty will never be discharged.

"It is an absurdity for the BJP to say this is not our man. That is ridiculous. The point is whether he is your man or not, you have a Police Commissioner here and it is his duty to make sure that people who indulge in such hooliganism to be brought to book.

"There is a layer of immunity that has been provided by politics and police. Even with the cordon around us, I was pushed. How did it happen? I understand the problems of police but they didn't perform their duty," Dhawan said.

In the court, Dhawan and Dave advocated making the committee's report public by giving it to the press with which the bench at first was in agreement saying "why there should be any objection."

"I think there should be no objection," Justice Chelameswar said.

However, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta expressed reservation on behalf of the Delhi Police for making public the report without the apex court going through it.

"You go through it and then think of it," he told the bench which agreed to his suggestion.

"Is there anything (in it that is) likely to create...," the bench asked before agreeing to go through it.

"We will read the report tonight and we will decide whether it has to be given to the press," the bench said while taking into its custody other 10 copies of the report, which was not in sealed envelopes.

Raval said he has 10 copies of the report in his hand besides the report in the sealed cover.

The bench was also supplied in a sealed cover the report of the Registrar General of the Delhi High Court who was asked to be at the Patiala House yesterday.

( Source : PTI )
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