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Uphaar case: Court makes ex-top cop an accused

Uphaar case: Court makes ex-top cop an accused

The Patiala House Court rejects the Central Bureau of Investigation's closure report on former IPS officer Amod Kanth.

New Delhi: The Patiala House Court on Thursday rejected the Central Bureau of Investigation's closure report on former IPS officer Amod Kanth in the Uphaar Cinema fire case in which 59 people had died in 1997. The court has made Amod Kanth an accused in the case and has summoned him saying there is enough evidence to prosecute him for allowing extra seats in the cinema hall.

"The investigation report of CBI is hereby rejected. Let the summons be issued against Amod Kanth for August 20," Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjeev Kumar said.

Kanth has been made an accused under Section 304A (causing death by rash and negligent act), 337 (causing hurt by an act which endangers human life) and 338 (causing grievous hurt by an act which endangers human life) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 14 of the Cinematography Act. As DCP (Licencing), Kanth had allowed Uphaar Cinema owners to add extra seats which blocked exit gates. Fifty nine people had died in the Uphar fire tragedy in 1997.

The next date of hearing has been fixed as August 20.

Reacting to the order, Neelam Krishnamurthy, President of Association of Victims of Uphaar Tragedy (AVUT), said "our stand has been vindicated. It was a long overdue decision against the errant police officer."
first published:August 12, 2010, 17:26 IST