Mumbai: The son of special CBI judge B H Loya on Sunday said the family was convinced that his father had died of natural causes.
“My father died of natural causes, our family is convinced it was a natural death… I have made myself clear that we do not have a suspicion… It was a natural death,” Anuj Loya told a news agency.
Asked about the petitions filed before the Bombay High Court and Supreme Court seeking a probe into his father’s death, Anuj said, “I do not have anything to say about it. I am no one to talk about it.
“I am speaking on behalf of the entire family, including my aunt and my grandfather. We are clear about it.”
On the future course of action the family intended to take, he said they were “trying to get things normal”.
Earlier, at a press conference here, Anuj said although he and his family earlier had suspicions about his father’s death, they no longer harboured such doubts.
Anuj, 21, while stating that his family was “pained” by the things happening over his father’s death, told reporters that NGOs and politicians should stop “harassing” his family over the issue.
“I had an emotional turmoil, hence I had suspicions about his death. But now we do not have any doubts about the way he died,” the son of the late judge told reporters.
“Earlier, my grandfather and aunt had some doubts about his death, which they shared. But now neither of them has any doubts,” he said.
The deceased judge’s father and Anuj’s aunt had alleged foul play behind his death.
Justice Loya, who was hearing the sensitive Sohrabuddin Sheikh “fake encounter” case, had allegedly died of a cardiac arrest in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, when he had gone to attend the wedding of a colleague’s daughter.
BJP chief Amit Shah was an accused in the case and was subsequently discharged.
With tears in his eyes, Anuj told reporters, “We faced some pressure from politicians and NGOs. We do not want to name anyone, but please excuse my family from continuously asking about my father’s death.”
“By going through some media reports and everything, (my) family is facing a lot of troubles… because of the all the things happening. We do not have any allegations against anyone. We are really pained… We are trying to get out of these things.
“I request you people, please do not try to harass or trouble us. I want to convey to you all,” he said.
K B Katake, retired district judge and a family friend of Loya, who was also present at the conference, said, “The 85year-old father of B H Loya is being harassed by some people, who are asking some questions in respect of the death of his only son and that creates panic in the family.”
“There was no suspicion in the mind of any family member with respect to the death of justice Loya. However, the people are harassing and making the family members panic,” he said.
“His (Anuj’s) mother is ill. Every day she requires medical treatment. On behalf of Loya’s family, I request you all media people to convey to those NGOs, lawyers and politicians not to go to his family, not to meet them and harass them like this with respect to the death of Loya,” the former district judge said.
Katake and Anuj, along with his cousin Pratik Bhandari, spoke to the media at a lawyer’s office at Nariman Point in south Mumbai.
Anuj is a second year student of law in a Pune-based college.
Katake said, “He (Anuj) is studying in the second year. Many people are visiting him, disturbing his studies. So on his behalf, I am requesting, being a family friend and a colleague of Loya (to stop visiting them). The family can live in peace. They have been suffering for the last three years.”
Asked about the video statement issued by his aunt and grandfather in the past, Anuj said, “Even they are clear about it now. They had some suspicions because of the emotional turmoil at that time.”
Asked whether he wanted an investigation in the matter, he said, “I am no one to decide about it. I do not have any suspicions.”
Commenting about the letter penned by him in February 2015, wherein he had raised suspicions, Anuj said, “It was a period of emotional turmoil. I was 17 at that time. I did not know what exactly was going on. I did not have any information that something was amiss at that time,” he said.
Bhandari said about Anuj’s aunt’s allegations: “It is not that we have withdrawn those allegations. But if you are consistently going to ask an 85-year-old man about his son’s death, how would he react?”
Katake said, “In this respect, if a sudden death takes place, some people are going to raise suspicions. These people who were emotionally disturbed… they came in the grip of their emotions and made some allegations.”
The Supreme Court had on Friday termed a “serious matter” the issue of alleged mysterious death of Loya and sought a response from the Maharashtra government on the pleas seeking an independent probe into it.
The Congress had said the PIL concerning the death of Loya must be entrusted with the seniormost judges of the apex court, who should ensure that under their supervision there was a “thorough and impartial” investigation by an independent SIT.
The Bombay Lawyers’ Association (BLA) had yesterday claimed that a petition filed in the Supreme Court, seeking a probe into the death of judge Loya, was “motivated”.
Anuj’s press conference comes two days after four seniormost judges mounted a virtual revolt against the country’s chief justice, raising questions on “selective” case allocation and certain judicial orders.
One of the four seniormost judges, who held an unprecedented press conference on Friday, had said the matter involving judge Loya’s death was one of the issues underpinning their differences with Chief Justice Dipak Misra.