New Delhi: The Supreme Court today agreed to examine a plea filed by Umadevi, the wife M.M. Kalburgi – the Kannada scholar and anti-superstition activist who was murdered in 2015 – and asked the Centre to respond to her demand for a special investigation team to probe the murder.
According to The Hindu, Umadevi told the court that the Karnataka police’s investigation into the murder had not been making progress despite repeated assurances from the government that the state CID was on it. She also said that the organisations responsible for her husband’s death were also behind the murders of rationalist thinkers Narendra Dabholkar and Govind Pansare. “All three were abused, threatened by certain sections of the society,” she said.
“Every offence is a crime against society and is unpardonable, yet there are some species of ghastly, revolting and villainous violations of the invaluable right to life, which leave all sensible and right-minded persons of society shell-shocked and traumatised in the body and soul,” Umadevi’s petition continued, as quoted by News18.
A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A.M. Khanwilkar and D.Y. Chandrachud issued notice to the Centre, National Investigative Agency, Central Bureau of Investigation and the state governments of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa, and asked them to respond within six weeks, The Hindu reported.
Kalburgi, a Sahitya Akademi Award winner, was shot dead by two assailants right outside his home, when he went to open the door, on August 30, 2015. The Karnataka Criminal Investigation Department had earlier said that countrymade pistol used to kill Kalburgi was the same one used to murder Pansare, Indian Express reported. The year before he died, Kalburgi became the target of a campaign by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and other right-wing forces, which burnt his effigy and demanded his arrest for remarks he made against idol worship.