The Kerala high court on Thursday directed the state police to hand over to the probe into the murder of Muthoot business group scion Paul Muthoot George to the Central Bureau of Investigation.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice S R Bannurmath and Justice Thothathil B Radhakrishnan also directed the CBI to complete the investigations within six months. The court's direction came on a petition filed by Muthoot business group Chairman M G George, seeking a CBI probe into his son Paul's murder in August last year.
The court directed the police to hand over all relevant documents regarding the case to the CBI. During the hearing, the police had told the court that investigations were carried out meticulously based on 'true facts', but the bench criticised the police probe on several occasions.
The state government had also informed the court that it was not 'afraid' of a CBI probe, contending that a fair investigation has been conducted by the state police. Pressing for the CBI probe, the Muthoot family had submitted in the court that the police had not properly recorded their statements and had 'omitted relevant parts from their statements.'
The Bench also criticised Inspector General of Police Vinson M Paul, who headed the Special Investigation Team, for conducting a press meet with regard to the investigation in the case.
The Kerala government had formed a SIT to probe the murder of Paul Muthoot, a young businessman of the multi-crore Muthoot group, with diverse business interests including finance and hospitality sectors. The SIT had filed a charge-sheet in Ramankiri court in Alapuzha, listing 25 accused in the case.
The magistrate had returned the charge-sheet saying it was incomplete. However, the high court, acting on an appeal by the state government, had stayed the order. Paul's father had then filed the petition, expressing dissatisfaction at the police investigation and seeking a CBI probe.