Supreme Court Issues Notice in Plea Challenging Acquittal of All Accused in RTI Activist Lingaraju’s Murder

LI Network

Published on: 31 July 2023 at 17:11 IST

The Supreme Court has taken cognizance of a plea challenging the acquittal of all individuals previously accused in the murder case of Right to Information (RTI) activist and journalist, Lingaraju.

A bench comprising of Justices Vikram Nath and Ahsanuddin Amanullah has directed the acquitted individuals to respond to the appeal, which challenges the Karnataka High Court’s decision to acquit them.

Among those accused of murdering Lingaraju were C Govindraju, a candidate contesting on a Janata Dal (Secular) ticket from Chamrajpet Assembly constituency, Bangalore, and his wife Gowramma, along with 10 others.

The brutal murder of Lingaraju occurred in broad daylight outside his residence on November 20, 2012. Prior to his death, Lingaraju had lodged several complaints of corruption against the accused politicians, Govindraju and Gowramma.

Based on these corruption complaints, the police conducted a raid on Govindraju and Gowramma’s house on November 9, 2012, just 11 days before the murder took place.

Following the tragic incident, the Karnataka High Court established a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the murder case. Subsequently, on October 28, 2020, the Bengaluru session court convicted 12 individuals, including hired killers, Govindraju, and Gowramma, under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for murder.

The convicted individuals were handed life imprisonment by the trial court.

However, in a surprising turn of events, on November 4, 2022, the Karnataka High Court acquitted all the accused on appeal, leading to the State government challenging this acquittal before the Supreme Court.

The case is being represented by Additional Advocate General Aman Panwar and Advocate VN Raghupathy on behalf of the State.

The Supreme Court’s notice seeks to address the concerns raised by the State government over the acquittal of the accused individuals and pursue justice for the late Lingaraju.

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