The onus for ordering a CBI probe into the Vyapam scam now rests with Supreme Court after the Madhya Pradesh High Court on Wednesday deferred hearing on a state government’s plea for an inquiry by the central agency, saying the apex court would hear similar petitions on Thursday.
As the MP High Court deferred the hearing till July 20, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who was in Delhi, said his government will request the Supreme Court for a CBI inquiry into the scandal which, according to Congress, has claimed 49 lives so far.
Meanwhile, the massive admission and recruitment scam that has seriously dented the state’s BJP government’s public image, took another murky turn with the post mortem report of a female MBBS student, a suspect in the case whose body was found beside railway tracks in Ujjain in 2012, maintaining it was a “homicidal” death caused by “violent axphyxia”.
As the report came into the public domain for the first time at the height of the controversy over a string of mysterious deaths of people associated with Vyapam, including five over the past week, the Madhya Pradesh police decided to reopen the case and launch fresh investigation.
Police had registered a case of murder following Amrita Damor’s death but later closed it describing it as an “accident”. The case that had faded from public memory with time, had come into focus last week when TV Today group journalist Akshay Singh died soon after interviewing her parents.
A day after the Chouhan government buckled under heightened all round pressure and moved the High Court seeking a CBI probe, the matter came up before a division bench headed by Chief Justice A M Khankilwar which deferred the hearing till July 20 on the ground that the Supreme Court is to hear a clutch of similar pleas on Thursday.
Additional Advocate General P Kaurav said the state government had in its plea contended that though the Special Task Force of MP police was “efficiently” investigating the scam, it wants a CBI inquiry following the “recent unfortunate incidents”.
The Supreme Court had agreed to hear the plea of Congress leader Digvijay Singh and three whistle-blowers — Ashish Chaturvedi, Anand Rai and Prashant Pandey — seeking a CBI probe into the scam.