SC to examine plea to monitor CBI probe in Aarushi murder case

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday posted to December 14 the hearing of an application urging it to constantly monitor CBI's probe into the sensational murder of teenaged school student Aarushi Talwar and her domestic servant Hemraj in neighbouring Noida.

A bench of Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan, Justices B Sudershan Reddy and P Sathasivam posted the matter for hearing on an application moved by an advocate Ajay Agrawal who claimed CBI's approach in the investigation was "questionable."

He urged the apex court to seek the entire status report besides monthly reports on the progress of the probe.

The application comes in the backdrop of reports that the vaginal swabs of Aarushi were manipulated to save the actual culprits, an aspect being probed by CBI.

Aarushi, the daughter of a dentist couple, and her domestic help Hemraj were found murdered at their Noida house on May 16, 2008.

On November 17, CBI had submitted in a sealed cover a status report before another bench of Justices Altamas Kabir and Cyriac Joseph on a seperate petition filed by another advocate Surat Singh who had also sought a restraint on the media from reporting on the progress of the investigation.

CBI had, in its affidavit, said it agreed certain restraint should be put on the media from damaging the reputation of individuals in pending criminal matters but at the same time said investigating agencies should share vital information with the press in public interest.

However, it said departmental action in the form of both civil and criminal prosecution should be taken against those police officers who leak unauthorised news to the media that causes damage to the reputation of the persons concerned.

CBI's affidavit was in response to the apex court's direction seeking the agency's views on Surat Singh's PIL which sought suitable guidelines and restrictions on the media from publishing or broacasting news relating to pending criminal matter, which he claimed tarnished the reputation of various individuals.