Justice Loya's Mysterious Death a Serious Issue

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A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud on Thursday posted for January 12, two pleas - filed by Maharashtra based journalist B.R. Lone and Congress leader Tehseen Poonawala, seeking an urgent hearing for a probe into Loya's death.

The Supreme Court today agreed to hear tomorrow two separate pleas seeking independent probe into the death of special CBI judge B H Loya, who was hearing the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case. Advocate Anita Shenoy appeared for petitioner Maharashtra-based journalist Banduraj Sambhaji Lone.

The Supreme Court on Friday called the death of CBI Special Court and Additional Sessions Judge Brijgopal Harkishan Loya a "serious issue" and asked the Maharashtra government to produce all documents related to the case. "If the court goes ahead with the hearing, it may have implications before the high court".

A PIL seeking investigation into the judge's death was also filed before the Bombay High Court on January 8 by the Bombay Lawyers' Association. The bench said it would consider the objections.

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Senior advocate Indira Jaising, who was also present in the courtroom, said she also had instructions from Bombay Lawyers' Association to pray that this matter should not be heard by the top court. He was the CBI judge hearing the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, which was transferred by the Supreme Court from Gujarat to Mumbai in September 2013. Loya was later found dead in mysterious circumstances while attending a wedding in Nagpur between the night of 30 November and the early morning of 1 December 2014. After Loya's death, Judge MB Gosavi took over the Sohrabuddin case.

Loya's sister Anuradha Biyani also alleged that her brother said he had been offered a Rs 100-crore bribe by Mohit Shah, who was then the chief justice of the Bombay High Court, to deliver a favourable judgment in the case involving Amit Shah.

The issue came under the spotlight in November past year after media reports quoting his sister fuelled suspicion about the circumstances surrounding his death and its link to the Sohrabuddin case.