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Motivated PIL Filed in Justice Loya Case At Behest of RSS: Congress

NEW DELHI (IANS) — The Congress on Thursday accused the RSS of getting a “motivated PIL” filed in the case of death of Judge B. H. Loya, saying it was filed by a BJP worker, Suraj Lolage, on the “directions” of RSS leader Bhaiyyaji Joshi, who asked him not to withdraw it before the Supreme Court.

The party also said that it agreed with the Supreme Court observations in its verdict last week dismissing a petition seeking a SIT probe into the death of Judge Loya that a PIL can be misused to settle political scores.

“We do agree with the Supreme Court that many of these Public Interest Litigations are being filed for purely political considerations and with the hope of an intended outcome,” Congress leader Kapil Sibal said at a press conference at the party headquarters. 

Sibal said Suryakant Lolage alias Suraj Lolage filed the first Public Interest Litigation in the Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court on November 27 last year following publication of a report in Caravan magazine a week earlier that Justice Loya had died in suspicious circumstances.

He said Maharashtra government made a discreet inquiry on November 23 through its CID to arrive at a conclusion.

Sibal said all other petitions relating to death of Justice Loya were filed in 2018, more than a month later.

The Congress leader said that Lolage had accompanied lawyer-activist Satish Uke at an AICC press conference in January this year where the party had demanded a Supreme Court-monitored Special Investigation Team probe into the “suspicious” death of judge Loya in December 2014.

Sibal said the party did not know Lolage’s background and his “proximity” to BJP and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh at that time. 

“We later learnt that Bhaiyyaji Joshi had directed Suraj Lolage file the PIL and not to withdraw it before the Supreme Court. This aspect is clear from the telephone conversation between Suraj Lolage and Satish Uke’s brother Pradeep Uke in February 2018,” Sibal said.

He said there was a conversation between Lolage and Pradeep Uke on February 3, and February 10, 2018. “This happened while the petitions on Judge Loya’s death were being considered by the Supreme Court. The content of the conversations shows that Suraj Lolage was in touch with Bhaiyyaji Joshi through Kotekar, a member of the RSS and an office bearer of the BJP. In the conversation, Bhaiyyaji Joshi is referred to as the number two in hierarchy of the RSS,” Sibal said.

“In other words, this direction for initiating the PIL immediately after discreet inquiry on November 23, 2017 was initiated at the instance of Bhaiyyaji Joshi and the RSS and while he was being advised to withdraw the petition, he, in the conversation, reveals that he was directed not to withdraw it by Bhaiyyaji Joshi.

“What does this show? Clearly, Bhaiyyaji Joshi and the RSS were very keen that this matter be heard in the Supreme Court as quickly as possible because they are the ones who initiated the Public Interest Litigation,” he added.

Sibal said there were two possibilities.

“Either Bhaiyyaji Joshi of the RSS wanted that an enquiry into Judge Loya’s death be conducted or wanted an outcome which ensures that the matter is closed without an inquiry,” Sibal said. 

He said with the facts were now in public domain and “it is for the people of India to decide what the motive of RSS was.”

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