HC seeks report of building collapse from TN govt

Chennai: The Madras High Court has sought a progress report from the government on the probe into the collapse of an 11-storey under-construction building here which killed 61 people nearly three years ago.

It also asked the government as to what it has done on the report of a one-man comission that went into the tragedy. The First Bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Huluvadi G Ramesh and Justice M Sundar, before which the PIL filed by DMK working President M K Stalin came up for hearing, directed the Tamilnadu government to file a progress report on the investigation carried out so far.

The DMK leader has sought a CBI investigation in the incident. The bench said, "We are of the considered view that instead of referring the matter to some other agency, particularly when the matter has already been investigated/enquired into, we direct the authorities to file a progress report before this court and if any irregularity is found, the same can be directed to be looked into by the administrative authorities."

The bench also gave liberty to the petitioner’s senior counsel P Wilson to submit his remarks with respect to the lapses, if any. The building collapsed on 28 June, 2014 and Justice Reghupathy, who had led the commission of inquiry, submitted his report to the government in 2015. The report blamed the builders for the tragedy and made several recommendations.

When the matter came up for hearing today, counsel Wilson contended that only a neutral probe would unravel the truth. The counsel alleged that the investigating officer was shielding the accused and that he had sought to 'nullify' the deposition of expert witnesses.

The bench, after giving its directions, posted the matter for further hearing to the first week of June.


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