Decided on January 01,1995

UNION OF INDIA Respondents


M.J.Rao - (1.)Terms of Reference to Jain Commission : The Jain Comimission of faquiry was appointed by the Government of India on 23-8-1991 in connection with the assassination of Shri Rajiv Gandhi, former Prime Minister of India Justice J. S. Verma Commission submitted its Report-on 23-3-1992 while the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the CBI submitted a charge sheet on 20-5-1992 before the Designated Court at Madras against 41 accused persons out of whom three were found absconding and twelve were dead. The case has starred before the Designated Court and the trial is on.
(2.)The reference to the Jain Commission ..concerned two issues (and the first issue consists of two parts). The inquiry is to be into :
(a) (i) the sequence of events leading to the assassination of Shri Rajiv Gandhi. (ii) all the facts and circumstances relating to the assassination of Shri RBJIV Gandhi. (other than the- matters covered by the Justice J. S. Verma Commission); and

(b) whether any person or agencies were responsible for conceiving, preparing and planning the assassination and whether there- was any conspiracy in this behalf and, if so, all its ramifications. II. Order of Commission dated 2-7-93 imposing self-restraint on itself:

(3.)In this C.M. we are first concerned with the .order of the Jain Commission dated 2-7-1993 (which contained the reasons for a brief order dated 1-6-1993). It was contended before the Commission by the then Attorney General that the Commission had no jurisdiction to conduct any inquiry into the areas covered by the. charge sheet submitted by the SIT before the Designated Court. The Government had confidence in the SIT and its investigation into cognizable offences was, under Chapter XII of the Code of Criminal Procedure, statutory. The submissions were reiterated by the counsel for the Central Government. The counsel for the State of Tamil Nadu contended that the Commission's jurisdiction was vide enough to cover the areas covered by the charge sheet of the SIT, but the Commission might refrain from going into those areas. The Commission held that it had jurisdiction to cover the entire area covered by the charge sheet but observed:
". . . .In my humble opinion, the object of the TADA Act would be not defeated and the Commission of Inquiry would be competent to make an inquiry keeping in view the provisions contained under Section 16 of the TADA Act. The inquiry should be conducted in such a fashion so that the provisions of the TADA Act, particularly Section 16, are not violated, rather they are observed and followed. The Commission of Inquiry is required to hold the proceedings in camera without disclosing the identity and addresses of the witnesses and, further without publishing its proceedings."
The Commission held that Section 173(2) Criminal Procedure Code . did net apply to the Commission and it has powers to call for case diaries and other documents relating to the investigation.

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