Bhubaneswar, April 26: Retired high court judge A.S. Naidu was today appointed as head of the one-man judicial commission to probe into the alleged assault of a judicial magistrate in Rourkela by policemen early this month.
“Justice Naidu has been appointed in consultation with the high court,” home secretary U.N. Behera told reporters here today.
The commission would submit its report within three months, official sources said.
Earlier, chief minister Naveen Patnaik had ordered a judicial inquiry into the alleged incident in the wake of a state-wide agitation by lawyers.
The state government had also asked Rourkela superintendent of police Diptesh Patnaik to proceed on leave and suspended inspector in-charge of Udit Nagar police station Sadananda Pujari.
According to the complaint lodged by Arun Patnaik, judicial magistrate first class stationed at Rourkela, the police officer had misbehaved and heckled him.
When he was standing in front of his official residence and talking on his mobile phone on the night of April 2, the magistrate was bundled into a police jeep. The magistrate said that he was slapped by the police officer and detained at Udit Nagar police station for hours that night, even after he had disclosed his identity.
He, in fact, had been advised by district police chief Diptesh Patnaik to resolve the matter amicably.
The alleged incident had triggered state-wide protests by the legal community.
Agitated lawyers of Orissa High Court in Cuttack and other courts across Orissa had boycotted court proceedings demanding transfer of Rourkela SP and arrest of the accused inspector in-charge.
The lawyers called off their agitations after the Rourkela SP was asked to proceed on leave.
In another development, the High Court Bar Association has filed a petition in the high court, which is still pending. The Rourkela Bar Association has also filed an intervention petition in the high court.
Rourkela Bar Association president Ramesh Bal said: “We welcome the judicial probe and appointment of Justice A.S. Naidu as the judicial commission. We expect that the probe will be completed within three months.”