Millennium Post

CBI allowed to file reply on ex-cops' plea to drop proceedings

Ahmedabad: A special CBI court on Tuesday allowed the CBI to file its reply on applications moved by former police officers D G Vanzara and N K Amin to drop proceedings against them in the 2004 Ishrat Jahan alleged fake encounter case.

The applications were moved by the two retired police officials on Tuesday.

The court of special CBI judge J K Pandya allowed CBI lawyer R C Kodekar to seek the view of the "higher authority" in the investigating agency, as requested by Pandya, and submit its reply on April 3 on the applications. Vanzara's lawyer V D Gajjar objected to the CBI lawyer's plea to obtain a reply, saying that the role of the central investigating agency ceases to exist after the competent authority in this case, the state government, denied it sanction for prosecution under section 197 of the CrPC.

He said Central Bureau of Investigation should have instead made representation before the state government as there is no provision for reply on the plea to drop proceedings as per the law.

Vanzara, a former deputy inspector general (DIG) of police, and Amin, who retired as superintendent of police (SP), moved their applications after the state government declined to grant CBI sanction to prosecute them in the case.

The two accused sought to drop cases against them on the ground that state government had declined sanction to prosecute them under section 197 of the CrPC, according to which prior sanction is required from a competent authority to prosecute a public servant.

The state government had declined sanction to prosecute saying they found no evidence against them after going through the record of the case produced by the CBI. This was conveyed to the court by the CBI lawyer during the last hearing on March 19. The court had earlier rejected discharge applications of the two former officers and had asked the CBI to clear its stand on whether it wants to get sanction to prosecute them from the state government. Accordingly, the CBI wrote to the state government requesting for the same.

Jahan, a 19-year-old woman from Mumbra near Mumbai, Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjadali Akbarali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were killed in an alleged fake encounter by police on the outskirts of Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004.

The city crime branch officials had gunned down Jahan and three others claiming that the four had links with terrorists and had plotted to kill then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi.

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