In the Jiah Khan suicide case, the Bombay High Court has observed that Khan's mother is trying to delay the trial by insisting that her daughter's death was homicidal in nature.

The Division Bench of Justice A S Gadkari and Justice M N Jadhav while holding so, observed –

"Repeated insistence of Petitioner to procure a finding from the Court that death of the victim in this case was homicidal and not suicidal is a clear indication of procrastinating the trial, especially when her substantive rights have not been foreclosed."

The Court also held that CBI carried out its investigation in an impartial, fair, and transparent manner, and thus held –

"Prima facie it does appear that a totally impartial, fair and transparent investigation is made by the CBI in a thorough manner. Each and every angle of the medical evidence and of the circumstantial evidence; the conduct of the accused and/or cause of the incident; everything was re-considered with a fresh angle to ascertain and verify whether it can be a case of 'homicidal death' and then only after confirming that it was a case of suicidal nature, the CBI has filed its further report (supplementary chargesheet)."

The Court dismissed the Petition filed by Rabia Khan who sought a fresh probe of the case, preferably by the FBI, the domestic intelligence and security service of the United States.

The Bench held it cannot go out of its territorial jurisdiction and direct the FBI to conduct a probe into the case.

"The entire approach of the Petitioner appears to procure an Order from this Court, without facing trial, that the death of victim was homicidal and not suicidal. This kind of approach appears to circumvent the due process of law. That apart, once the trial has commenced we do not understood as to how the Petitioner can maintain such objections especially in the light of the Orders passed by this Court and this Court having found that the investigation done by Respondent No.2 – CBI has been appropriate," the Bench observed.

The Court further referring to the report SCARMANS (a UK-based law firm approached by Rabia Khan for legal advice), noted –

"…we are also lost to understand that SCARMANS have given their report on the evidence relating to the victim's death when investigation is over and now that the trial has already commenced. We are afraid to state that this report attempts to deliver a verdict even before the trial is over in the present case. The report is allegedly signed by two Advocates and other two persons. It is appalling to read in the report that suggestions are given for review of police procedure and training for investigators as also recommendation for appointment of SIT when this Court has passed a detailed Order after considering all issues raised by the Petitioner and the same has been confirmed and affirmed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court which is the highest Court of this land."

The Court thus dismissed the Petition while holding –

"By pointing out to the material on record prima facie alteast no fault can be found with the investigation carried out either by the Police or by the CBI. It is stated that merely because CBI has arrived at the same conclusion, that the death of victim being a case of suicide, it will not be proper to hold that CBI has not carried out further or proper investigation in the matter."

Cause Title – Rabia Khan v. Union of India & Ors. [Crl. W.P. No. 5609/2021]

Click here to read/download the Judgment