Lakhimpur Kheri: Judge Who Granted Bail to Accused Ashish Mishra Recuses Himself
Justice Rajeev Singh had ordered the bail of Ashish Mishra earlier this year on 10 February.
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The Allahabad High Court judge who heard the case and ordered the bail of Ashish Mishra, son of Union minister Ajay Mishra, in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence case, has recused himself from hearing the case after the Supreme Court cancelled his bail order last week on 18 April.
Justice Rajeev Singh, of the Lucknow bench of the High Court heading a single-judge bench, had ordered the bail of Ashish Mishra earlier this year on 10 February.
Ashish Mishra had been arrested in the 3 October Lakhimpur Kheri case, where eight people, including four farmers and a journalist, were killed and several others injured after a convoy of SUVs, allegedly belonging to the union minister, ran over the farmers protesting against the three farm laws. The farm laws were later repealed.
The families of the victims had challenged the bail order of Ashish Mishra in the apex court. Later, a three-judge bench led by Chief Justice NV Ramana overturned the high court's order and directed Mishra to surrender within a week.
Justice Singh, however, gave no reason for withdrawing himself from the single-judge bench hearing the bail plea. The date for the next hearing in the matter will be fixed after the appointment of a new bench to hear the case.
What did the Supreme Court Say?
Hearing the petition filed by the families of the victims of Lakhimpur Kheri violence, the Supreme Court set aside the 10 February order of the UP High Court for “ignoring judicial precedents and established parameters for grant of bail.”
The SC also asked the high court to hear Ashish Mishra's bail plea afresh in "a fair, impartial and dispassionate manner."
Allowing the petition filed by the victim's family, the SC also directed that the families will be provided with the legal aid counsel if the petitioners are unable to engage a lawyer of their own.
Justice NV Ramana-led SC bench further said that the families would be given sufficient opportunity to be heard during the Mishra's bail plea hearing in the future.
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