KOCHI: One of the three cases, pertaining to detention of forest officials at Muthanga, is at the CJM court here in which the crossing of only five out of the more than 50 witnesses in the 2003 agitation have been completed.
At this pace, the case would take another 10 years to reach its logical conclusion, legal experts said.
Proceedings in two cases, related to the death of a policeman at Muthanga, are going on at the CBI special court here. What’s strange is that even the framing of charges has not been completed so far! Even the judges who heard these cases in the special court and at the CJM court here over the years had, on many occasions, asked whether it was not feasible to shift the cases to Wayanad. “It is only a simple procedure and the CBI could easily confer special judge status on the Kalpetta court for this particular case and ensure speedy justice. If it is not possible, why can’t they complete the proceedings through video conferencing? Even hardcore criminals are being tried through video conferencing,” S Krishnakumar, counsel of the defendants in one of the cases, said.
Charging cases against such a huge number of agitators itself was a conspiracy, said M Geetanandan of the Adivasi Gotra Maha Sabha. It was part of a plan to inflict maximum punishment on an already victimised section of society before the actual verdict was passed.
Gruelling Ordeal for tribal woman
On September 28 last year, Maari, 52, of Cheeral Murukkalady Oorali tribal colony at Wayanad, was taken into custody by CBI sleuths from her home as a warrant was pending against her in the Muthanga case. She was taken in a car despite her family members saying she used to have bouts of mental disturbance. On their way, the investigators also took Indu, the youngest daughter of Maari, along with them. The CBI men aborted the trip midway and got rid of Maari at Bathery general hospital. A plaint has been filed by Maari’s children against A P Kumaran ASI for violating the Code of Criminal Procedure under CrPC.