SC seeks WB reply on habeus corpus plea of missing Kolkata museum officer

The Supreme Court on Monday sought a response of West Bengal government on a plea seeking to know the whereabouts of an officer of Kolkata`s Indian Museum who has been missing for the past one month after he pointed out alleged irregularities in the management of the museum.

PTI| Updated: Aug 05, 2014, 00:38 AM IST

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday sought a response of West Bengal government on a plea seeking to know the whereabouts of an officer of Kolkata`s Indian Museum who has been missing for the past one month after he pointed out alleged irregularities in the management of the museum.
A bench, headed by Chief Justice R M Lodha, issued a notice to the state government and sought its response on the petition filed by the cousin brother of 34-year-old Sunil Kumar Upadhyay, preservation officer at the Indian Museum, seeking a direction for CBI probe in the matter.

The petition, filed by Ghaziabad resident Krishan Mohan Upadhyay, said Sunil was a whistle blower who pointed out alleged irregularities in the management of the Indian Museum.

When the bench, also comprising justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman, said the matter could be heard by the Calcutta High Court, senior advocate Dushyant Dave replied that the victim`s family has no hope from West Bengal government and that is why they are approaching the apex court.

The petition, filed through advocate Anirudh Sharma, said "it was an open secret now in public discourse that he had raised his voice against corruption and irregularities prevailing in Indian museum for which he has paid a price".

"Dr Sunil Kumar Upadhyay working as a preservation officer in Indian museum is missing since July 3, 2014, whose missing report was lodged on July 4, 2014 which was converted into FIR only on July 19, 2014 not by Kolkata police itself but on a written request by his brother.

"It now transpires that a complex investigation by an expert investigating agency would be required, having seamless jurisdiction and will to take on the local mafia dealing in artifacts," it said.

It added the Kolkata Police still have no clue even one month after disappearance of a class-I officer of the government of India and the Centre has also not taken concrete steps to trace him.