Kerala High Court Exonerates KPCC Chief in 1995 Conspiracy Case

In a significant legal development, the Kerala High Court on Tuesday acquitted KPCC chief K Sudhakaran and another accused, Rajeevan, from charges of conspiring to murder senior CPI(M) leader and LDF convener E P Jayarajan in 1995.

The court ruled that the allegations of criminal conspiracy, initially probed by the Andhra Pradesh police, had already led to a case in which no charges were pressed against Sudhakaran and Rajeevan. Consequently, the subsequent FIR lodged in Kerala was deemed unjustifiable, leading to their discharge.

The controversy stemmed from an incident where Jayarajan was injured by gunshot while on a train in Andhra Pradesh’s Chirala area. Despite the gravity of the charges, the prosecution’s effort to press similar allegations in Kerala was thwarted by the legal principle that bars the registration of a second FIR on the same set of facts.

Justice Ziyad Rahman A. A. emphasized that the Kerala FIR, filed in 1997, violated the petitioners’ fundamental rights, including the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 of the Constitution.

The court observed that while the initial investigation might have been inadequate, it did not justify a second FIR. Instead, it suggested that any further investigation should have been pursued through the original case handled by the Chirala Railway Police.

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