The Karnataka High Court dismissed the petition challenging the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) conclusion against the senior police officer Shankar Mahadev Bidari. The state high court annulled Bidari's appointment as the Director-General and Inspector General of Police and termed him "worse than Saddam Hussein or Muammar Gaddafi."
The Tamil Nadu and Karnataka police teams worked hand-in-hand to hunt down the notorious smuggler Verrapan, who was hiding in forest areas. Under Bidari's command, the Special Task Force (STF) allegedly went above the law and violated the human rights of the tribal people during the manhunt.
Noting these alleged crimes caused by STF, the CAT objected to the appointment of Bidari for the top-most position in the state police force. The government and the accused top cop moved the Karnataka HC challenging the CAT decision.
However, on Friday in a major setback for Bidari, the state high court bench comprising Justices N Kumar and H S Kempanna upheld the tribunal's order to quash the appointment.
Bidari argued, as he tried to pass the buck and escape the legal tangle, that he was only the deputy commander of the STF when the alleged atrocities were committed and was not "omnipresent and omnipotent like Saddam Hussain or Muammar Gaddafi."
The Karnataka HC, however, refused to buy his statement. Meanwhile, countering the argument put by Bidari, the Division bench said that "though he's not one of them, if what the two tribal women (victims of STF barbarousnesses) have said in affidavit is true, he is worse than them."
Further, the HC directed the government to appoint A R Infant instead of Bidari "Otherwise they are answerable to the public of the state."
When the search party for Verrapan was on, in and around Tamil Nadu and Karnataka forest areas, the STF, headed by Bidari allegedly committed serious human rights violation on the tribal community in which 66 people died under suspicious circumstances.