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Tuesday, September 08, 2009 11:06:40 AM, Agencies

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Ahmedabad: In yet another setback to the Narendra Modi government, the Ahmedabad metropolitan magistrate, S.P. Tamang, has ruled that the June 2004 killing of Ishrat Jahan and three others was a case of “fake encounter.”


In his 252-page, hand-written report, Tamang has named the then “encounter specialist” of the Gujarat police, D.G. Vanzara, among others, accused in the “cold-blooded murder” of the teenaged girl and the three others.


Vanzara and several other policemen are already in jail in connection with the killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh, which the government confessed before the Supreme Court was a case of “fake encounter.”


In the report, the judge stated that the policemen killed Ishrat Jahan, Javed Ghulam Sheikh alias Pranesh Kumar Pillai, Amjad Ali Akbar Ali Rana alias Rajkumar and Jisan Johar Abdul Gani alias Janbaaz in cold blood to get public recognition, promotion and appreciation from the chief minister.

Tamang said Ishrat Jahan was well-educated and came from a good family. “She conducted tuitions and worked hard to support her family. Despite being a good citizen, she was declared a terrorist and killed in an encounter,” the report stated.

The report damned the then police commissioner K R Kaushik and the then joint police commissioner (Crime Branch) P P Pande. It also slammed D G Vanzara, G L Singhal and N K Amin who were additional police commissioner (Crime Branch), ACP (Crime Branch) and ACP (Crime Branch) respectively during that time.

The report stated, “The policemen illegally detained Ishrat Jahan and three others in Mumbai on June 12, 2004. They hid the four at a city farmhouse on June 13 and 14. Early on June 15, they killed the four people near Sardarnagar-Kotarpur.

“Rigor mortis had set completely in Ishrat Jahan’s body. The contents of her stomach showed that food had been digested properly. The four  died due to shock and haemmorhage caused by police bullets. The deaths were planned and committed in cold blood. The policemen are responsible for Ishrat Jahan’s death.”

After the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, this is the second case where an encounter involving Gujarat police during Narendra Modi rule is being probed again. Following the inquiry report, the court can order the arrest of the guilty policemen on an appeal by Ishrat’s family. Also top government functionaries can be made party to the case.

Last month, the Gujarat High Court had formed a three-member committee headed by an officer of the rank of Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) to investigate the encounter. This was done following a petition by Ishrat’s mother Shameema, who alleged her daughter was killed in a fake encounter by Gujarat police.

Advocate Mukul Sinha, who represents Shameema, said, “The three-member panel will have to take the report into consideration while conducting their inquiry. Another writ filed by Pillai’s father Gopinath at High Court is up for hearing on Tuesday.”










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That's a very good development. But a probe committee of Gujarat officers will not come out with the truth unfortunately.


Shabnam Hashmi (by e-mail)



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