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Gujarat HC orders CBI to probe Ishrat Jehan encounter case

Ahmedabad, Thu, 01 Dec 2011 ANI

Ahmedabad, Dec.1 (ANI): The Gujarat High Court announced on Thursday that it would be directing the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to conduct the probe in the Ishrat Jehan encounter case, as it could not trust the state police to do a fair and credible investigation.


Last month, the high court had ordered the registration of fresh cases against the accused policemen after rceiving a report on the incident from a Special Investigation Task (SIT) team.


In October this year, a team of forensic experts and investigation officials had reconstructed the shootout in Ahmedabad to look into key details of the killing.


Recreating the scene of the incident on a highway on the outskirts of the city, probe officials even placed a dilapidated vehicle marking the car in which Jahan and her associates were gunned down, in a bid to ascertain whether the shootout was indeed, genuine.


The Crime Branch of Gujarat Police is said to have been involved in the killing of Jehan, an alleged operative of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, in a fierce shootout in 2004 in Ahmedabad.


According to the police, Jehan and her accomplices were involved in a sinister plot to assassinate Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.


However, widely believed as fake, the shootout sparked a fierce public and political outcry and was unequivocally condemned by academics, civil society activists, journalists and political leaders, who demanded justice for Jehan.


Interestingly, a metropolitan court in Ahmedabad ruled in 2009 that Jehan"s shootout was "fake," pricking holes in the sequence of events provided by the police and renewing demands for a fresh probe into the incident.


Presently, a Special Investigation Team (SIT) appointed by the Supreme Court is handling the case. Former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director R K Raghavan heads the team.


Ishrat Jehan was killed along with Javed Sheikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar in a shootout on June 15, 2004 on the outskirts of Ahmedabad while they were travelling in a private car. (ANI)


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