SC orders fresh probe into Jodhpur law student’s death

Bench sets aside the closure report filed by Rajasthan police into the death in August 2017

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered fresh investigation into the mysterious death of a third year student of National Law University, Jodhpur, three years ago.

A Bench led by Justice Rohinton F. Nariman set aside the closure report filed by the Rajasthan police into the death of 21-year-old Vikrant Nagaich in August 2017.

The judgment, authored by Justice Navin Sinha, was on the basis of a petition filed by the student’s mother, represented by advocate Sunil Fernandes. She had sought a CBI probe to solve the “mystery of the unnatural death” of her son.

The court ordered the State police to complete the investigation in two months.

Hasty probe

Justice Sinha said that though the current closure report clearly indicated a homicide, the report divulged a hasty probe lacking bona fide. The court held that a fair investigation is as much a part of a constitutional right guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution as a fair trial.

In this manner, the investigation remained inconclusive for nearly three long years with the investigating agency sanguine of passing it off as an accidental death without coming to a firm conclusion avoiding to complete the investigation, the court noted.

The petition had noted that even the FIR was registered after 10 months of delay.

The police version is that on August 13, 2017 the student went to a restaurant near the university campus with his friends in the evening and never returned. His body was found the next morning near a railway track.

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