Sohrabuddin encounter case: Bombay HC gives verdict on cops' discharge
On Monday, the Bombay High Court dismissed petitions challenging the discharge of top cops in the Sohrabuddin Shaikh encounter case. The court was expected to deliver its verdict on whether senior Gujarat and Rajasthan police officers - DG Vanzara, Rajkumar Pandian and Dinesh Amin - deserved to be discharged in the case, which dates back to 2005. Here are the details.
Several cops had been charged with a fake encounter
The case pertains to an encounter between suspected gangster Sohrabuddin Shaikh and policemen in November 2005. The encounter, involving the aforementioned cops and other policemen, resulted in Shaikh, his wife Kausar Bi, and aide Tulsiram Prajapati getting killed. Notably, a subsequent CBI investigation accused the aforementioned policemen, along with 33 others, for killing Shaikh and co in a "fake" encounter.
What the CBI chargesheet reveals about the case
According to the chargesheet filed by the CBI, Sohrabuddin and his wife were abducted by officers from the Gujarat Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) and the Rajasthan police from near Hyderabad. Later, police allegedly killed the duo in a fake encounter. Prajapati, who was an eyewitness to the killings, was also allegedly shot dead by police in a fake encounter in December 2006.
Amit Shah and 14 cops were discharged earlier
At the time of Sohrabuddin's death, the Gujarat police had claimed that he had terror links. After the case was shifted to a special court in Mumbai from Gujarat on orders of the Supreme Court, the special court, between 2014 and 2017, discharged 15 from among those accused. The discharged included 14 cops, and current BJP chief, Amit Shah.
CBI and Sohrabuddin's brother had filed pleas against the discharges
Meanwhile, lower court had earlier discharged the trio of policemen named earlier, along with Rajasthan IPS officer Dinesh MN and Rajasthan Police constable Dalpat Singh Rathod. However, Sohrabuddin's brother Rababuddin, along with the CBI, had filed pleas in the Bombay High Court, challenging the lower court's decision to discharge the five.