The Kerala High Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea, seeking a CBI probe into the 'missing' rifles and live cartridges from the Special Armed Police Battalion of the Kerala police at Thiruvananthapuram.
Dismissing the plea in limine (at the preliminary stage), a division bench, comprising Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly said the case could not be considered merely based on media reports.
Petitioner George Vattukulam had said he came to know about the "serious finding" of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India from newspaper reports.
He submitted that the CAG audit had revealed a shortage of twenty five 5.56 mm INSAS rifles and 12,601 live cartridges were missing from the Special Armed Police Battalion.
He alleged that the loss of arms and ammunition was a serious issue, having implications on national security.
The petitioner alleged that the investigation into the incident was not progressing even after several days of the incident as police were trying to cover up the matter.
The state police chief had not conducted any fair investigation, the petitioner alleged.
The probe has to be started by the CBI at the earliest, the petitioner said.
Meanwhile, a fresh plea was filed in the High Court on Wednesday, seeking a probe by CBI or NIA into the incident. The plea was filed by Ramachandra Kaimal from Kottayam.
The CAG report which was tables in the state assembly on last Wednesday, found shortage of twenty five 5.56 mm INSAS rifles and 12,061 live cartridges in the SAPB and also came down on state police chief Loknath Behera for purchasing bullet proof vehicles for VVIP security, violating guidelines.
Meanwhile, Crime Branch chief Tomin J Thachankary who inspected the Special Armed Police (SAP) Battalion on Monday said that no rifles were missing and that only live cartridges were missing. Denying the CAG report, Thachankary had said that all the 660 rifles of SAP were intact and that only 13 rifles among them were at present not in the camp as it has been taken for training by IR battalion trainees to Manipur.
(With inputs from PTI)