- Centre says it wants to be heard "in the interest of justice"
- Rhea Chakraborty had challenged case filed by Sushant's father in Bihar
- Bihar says separate probe necessary as Mumbai Police is helping her
The central government on Friday approached the Supreme Court requesting to be heard in the petition filed by actor Rhea Chakraborty challenging the case against her in Bihar in the death of her boyfriend Sushant Singh Rajput.
Amid a tussle between investigators from Maharashtra and Bihar, the central government said it wants to be heard in the case in the interest of justice and it will not cause prejudice to any party in the transfer petition. Legal experts say this is standard procedure.
Rhea Chakraborty had challenged the complaint filed against her in Patna following Sushant Singh Rajput's death on June 14. The Bollywood actor's death was suicide, says the Mumbai Police, which is investigating whether he was driven by clinical depression and ugly rivalries in the film industry.
The Patna Police launched a new investigation after Sushant Singh Rajput's father filed a complaint blaming Rhea Chakraborty, for his suicide and accusing her of taking his money and harassing him. Later, the case was transferred to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
Earlier in the day, the central government filed the transfer notification with the Supreme Court. in a statement to the top court, the Bihar government accused the Mumbai police of helping Rhea Chakraborty and obstructing its investigation.
Rhea Chakraborty has given no proof that the Patna police is "biased against her" beyond "general and bald allegations", said the lawyer for Bihar, arguing against the actor's petition to transfer the case filed by Sushant Singh Rajput's family in Patna to Maharashtra.
Even though its case has been transferred to the CBI, the Bihar government told the Supreme Court that Patna police does have jurisdiction in the case because the complaint is by Sushant Singh Rajput's father KK Singh, who is from Patna.
At this point, three agencies - the Mumbai Police, the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate - have been tasked with investigating Sushant Singh Rajput's death and events leading up to it.
The Enforcement Directorate, which investigates financial crimes, had filed a separate money laundering case last week over "suspicious transactions" in connection with the Bollywood actor's death based on the complaint filed with the Bihar Police. Ms Chakraborty appeared before the agency on Friday to give her statement.
Rhea Chakraborty, who has denied all charges made by Mr Singh and had herself asked for a CBI probe last month, reversed her position on Thursday saying that the agency should stay away till the Supreme Court has given its verdict on the issue.
An investigation by the CBI at this point will be "totally illegal and beyond any known legal principles, affecting the Federal Structure of the Nation," she said in a statement.