The incident which was earlier believed to be a hit-and-run case took a chilling turn after a disturbing CCTV footage of the incident surfaced on the internet. The CCTV footage showing an autorickshaw hitting Additional District and Session Judge of Dhanbad, Justice Uttam Anand left everyone shocked and deeply pained.
A Special Investigation Team has been constituted into the alleged murder of ASJ Anand. The police have arrested the vehicle driver and his aide.
As per the reports, Justice Anand was hearing some high-profile murder cases of the area and had recently rejected bail to two gangsters.
The incident took place near Golf Ground less than 500 meters from his house at Judge Colony of Hirapur at around 5 am on Wednesday when Mr. Anand was out on a morning walk.
In the CCTV footage, a tempo rams the judge and drives off. A passerby saw Justice Anand bleeding heavily on the road and rushed him to the nearby hospital. But he succumbed to the injuries.
Additional District & Sessions Judge, Dhanbad Uttam Anand gets run over during his morning walk under suspicious circumstances. The judge was dealing with a few high-profile murder cases from the area and had recently rejected bail petitions of a few criminals. TRIGGER WARNING pic.twitter.com/FFia9usXQc
— Nalini (@nalinisharma_) July 28, 2021
“Brazen Attack on Judicial Independence”: SCBA President Vikas Singh
Supreme Court Bar Association President Vikas Singh highlighted the matter before the bench of Justice DY Chandrachud who suggested Singh to mention the matter before the Chief Justice of India.
“It is a brazen attack on judiciary. This is a matter which should go to the CBI. The local police is usually complicit in such matters. It is shocking. A judge is on a morning walk and is hit by a vehicle. He was dealing with bail applications of gangsters. This is an attack on judicial independence,” Singh urged for a CBI probe
Supreme Court Denied To Interfere
After SCBA president Vikas Singh mentioned the matter before CJI NV Ramana, Supreme Court on Thursday refused to interfere citing the reason that Jharkhand High Court has already taken a suo moto cognizance of the matter and has ordered a murder probe. CJI also appreciated Singh’s efforts to highlight the issue.
“I spoke to the Chief Justice of Jharkhand High Court. He has taken up the case and all officers are asked to be present. Now leave it there. If we involve at this stage the probe will be hindered,” said CJI NV Ramana.
Accident or Murder
Until the CCTV footage was not out on the internet, it was believed to be an accident. Justice Anand was hearing the Ranjay Singh murder case who was a close aide of MLA Sanjeev Singh. Sanjeev Singh was found guilty of murdering his own cousin Neeraj Singh (Former Deputy Mayor of Dhanbad district).
Justice Anand had also rejected the bail petitions of two gangsters of Aman Singh and Deepu Singh who were convicted in Neeraj Singh murder case.
Justice Uttam Anand was an alum of St. Xavier’s School Hazaribag of the 1987 batch and was appointed as Additional District and Sessions judge VIII at Dhanbad judgeship.
Another Judge’s Murder Mystery: Justice Loya Murder Case
The death of 48-year-old judge Brijgopal Harkishan Loya on December 1, 2014 is still a mystery. He was presiding over a Central Bureau of Investigation special court in Mumbai and was hearing the most high-profile Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case where Amit Shah was a prime accused.
It was claimed to be natural death due to cardiac arrest but Justice Loya’s family raised serious questions over the circumstances around his death. The family alleged that there were blood stains on the collar and back of Justice Loya’s dead body. The approval for post-mortem was also not taken and so many more questions remain unanswered.