MUMBAI: An ex-principal of St Xavier's College, Father Frazer Mascarenhas, on Wednesday moved a plea in the Bombay High Court seeking to clear the name of Father Stan Swamy from the observations and findings made against the Jesuit priest by a special NIA court while rejecting his bail application. The petition has even sought a direction for conducting a proper judicial enquiry into Swamy's death, as he died in custody.
Mascarhanes, in his plea, stressed on the fact that Swamy died without a trial and accordingly sought “necessary directions asserting that Swamy, in the eyes of law, is entitled to be seen as innocent and not guilty of the offences alleged against him, irrespective of the (prima facie) findings of the special court”
The petition further cited an instance, wherein a particular political party disallowed the Jesuits from naming a park near Mangaluru after Swamy and said that the odium of accusations had “even followed him to the grave”.
In his plea, Mascarhanes has also urged the judges to quash and set aside the findings of a special judge, who while rejecting Swamy's bail plea on March 22, recorded in his orders that there was prima facie material against the deceased priest. It further states that since Swamy wasn't sent for trial, he is entitled to the presumption that he is innocent.
The plea also claimed that the special NIA court's observations against Swamy, while refusing his bail, “besmirches” his reputation and body of work in tribal and human rights, and that the said finding also violates his fundamental right to reputation under Article 21 of the Constitution.