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CM Baghel hails SC decision: Chhattisgarh Police set to probe larger conspiracy in Jheeram valley attack

Jheeram valley attack: With the Supreme Court's dismissal of the NIA's plea, Baghel affirmed that the path is now clear for the state police to delve into the intricacies of the alleged conspiracy.

Edited By: Nitin Kumar @Niitz1 Raipur Published on: November 21, 2023 16:47 IST
Bhupesh Baghel
Image Source : PTI/FILE PHOTO Senior Congress leader and Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel at a press conference.

Jheeram valley attack: In a significant development, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel welcomed the Supreme Court's decision to allow the state police to investigate the alleged larger conspiracy behind the 2013 Jheeram Ghati Naxal attack, which claimed the lives of 29 people, including state Congress leaders. The Supreme Court dismissed a plea filed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) against the Chhattisgarh Police probe into the FIR, arguing a broader conspiracy in the Naxal attack. The bench, comprising Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices JB Pardiwala and Manoj Misra, rejected the NIA's plea, stating, "Sorry, we would not like to interfere. Dismissed."

Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel expressed his appreciation for the Supreme Court's decision, describing it as the "door of justice" opening for Chhattisgarh. He emphasised the importance of investigating the "larger political conspiracy" behind the Jheeram incident, highlighting that while the NIA and a commission had conducted investigations, they failed to explore this aspect.

"The Jheeram incident was the biggest political massacre in the world's democracy wherein we lost 32 people including senior Congress leaders,” he said.

Baghel further revealed that when the Chhattisgarh Police initiated the investigation, the NIA sought court intervention to disrupt it. "When Chhattisgarh Police started the investigation, NIA approached the court to disrupt it. Today the path has been cleared. Now Chhattisgarh Police will investigate this. Who had hatched what conspiracy with whom? Everything will become clear. Once again a tribute to the martyrs of Jheeram,” Baghel said in the post on X.

The Jheeram Naxal attack occurred on May 25, 2013, when Naxals ambushed a convoy of Congress leaders in the Jheeram valley of Bastar district, resulting in the deaths of prominent figures, including the state Congress chief and former Union minister.

While the NIA had previously taken over the probe and filed a charge-sheet, a fresh FIR was lodged in 2020, seeking an investigation into the larger conspiracy angle. The NIA attempted to halt the Chhattisgarh Police's investigation into the new FIR, but the Supreme Court's recent decision has paved the way for the state police to proceed.

This development marks a significant turning point in the quest for justice in the Jheeram Ghati Naxal attack, allowing the Chhattisgarh Police to unravel the potential political dimensions behind the tragic incident.

Also read | Chhattisgarh records 76.31% voter turnout, marginally lower than 2018 elections



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