India

NHRC Issues Notice to UP Govt on Sachan’s Death

New Delhi: The Uttar Pradesh Human Rights Commission (UPHRC) yesterday issued a notice to the state government on mysterious death of Deputy Chief Medical Officer Y.S. Sachan in the infirmary of the Lucknow district jail on June 22.

According to official sources, the notice was issued to the principal secretary (Home), additional director general (Prisons), the deputy inspector general of Lucknow and the district magistrate. They have been asked to submit the facts of the case, including circumstances of Dr. Sachan’s death in the jail. The Commission has also asked for the post-mortem report. The government has been asked to file its reply by July 12.

The government has maintained that the Deputy CMO had committed suicide by hanging from the grill of a window in the toilet situated on the first floor of the jail in Mohanlalganj. According to the government, Sachan had used his belt for hanging from the grill. The belt was reportedly found strapped around his neck when his body was recovered by the jail staff around 8 p.m. on Wednesday.

Dr Y. S. Sachan (file photo)

However, the autopsy report revealed the presence of nine injury marks on Sachan’s body, eight of which were caused by a sharp-edged weapon. Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh told reporters on Thursday that the eight injury marks were caused by a sharp-edged blade. He said the blade was recovered from the site and had been “taken as evidence.” The ninth mark was around the neck, the report stated.

Suspecting foul play in Sachan’s death, the Opposition parties and his family have alleged that he was murdered. Both have demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation. Even as the government has rejected the Opposition demand of a CBI inquiry, five members of the Lucknow district jail, including the jailor and deputy jailor, were suspended for negligence of duty.

With the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court deferring the plea for a CBI probe and directing the authorities to hand over the autopsy report to the deceased’s family, he was cremated on Friday after the post-mortem report was received by his kin. Sachan was the prime accused in the case of murder of CMO (Family Welfare) B.P. Singh.

Disposing of a petition seeking a CBI inquiry into Sachan’s death, a vacation Bench of Justice Shabihul Hasnain and Justice Vedpal fixed July 18 as the next date of hearing.

Dr. Sachan’s family members, including his wife Malti Sachan and brother, R.K. Sachan, had earlier refused to perform his last rites till the case was handed over to the CBI and a second autopsy was conducted in the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences. Rejecting the government’s claim that the Deputy CMO had committed suicide by hanging with the help of a belt, his family members alleged that he was murdered in order to shield some highly placed persons.

Even as Dr. Sachan’s family agreed to cremate him, it was alleged that the government tried hard to convince them since Thursday, when his body was received by them, to agree for his last rites and drop the demand for a CBI probe. The police, however, denied that they were pressured. A letter, dated June 23, purportedly signed by his son Sankalp Kumar and Mrs. Malti Sachan, was written to the Lucknow Deputy Inspector-General D.K. Thakur for lodging a first information report in the case and instituting an impartial inquiry. Alleging that Dr. Sachan was murdered – as his body bore injuries — the written representation alleged that he was eliminated in a bid to shield some high-profile persons.

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