Gujarat govt rejects Ishrat judicial inquiry report

Encounter case: BJP defends Narendra Modi

Shamima Kausar, mother of Ishrat Jahan (inset), holds a group photo of the family while standing with her daughter and son in Thane on Monday. PTISlamming metropolitan magistrate S P Tamang for “overstepping” his jurisdiction by submitting his report, the state government said it will challenge it in a higher court.
Tamang in his report has concluded that four people — Ishrat, Javed Ghulam Sheikh alias Pranesh Kumar Pillai, Amjad Ali alias Rajkumar Akbar Ali Rana and Jisan Johar Abdul Gani — killed in an encounter on the outskirts of the city on June 15, 2004, were not linked with Pakistan-based terror outfit LeT as claimed by the police.

“The report prepared by the magistrate is beyond the jurisdiction of Section 176 of the CrPC (inquiry by magistrate into the cause of death) and will not stand legal scrutiny”Gujarat government spokesman Jaynarayan Vyas said.

Quoting a government affidavit, he said it clearly stated that Ishrat and the other three were LeT operatives and planning terror strikes in Gujarat.

Tamang’s report said the encounter in which Ishrat and others were gunned down was fake and executed in “cold blood” by police officers.

The report accused senior police officers of “staging” the encounter and using their service revolvers to shoot the victims from a “close range.”

Even the autopsy report said the death of the four was due to bullet injuries, it added.

The report alleged that police officers, including the then city police commissioner K R Kaushik, then JCP (crime branch) P P Pande, suspended DIG D G Vanzara, then ACP G L Singhal, and ACP N K Amin had planned this encounter to get promotion, to secure their positions and to get accolades from the chief minister.

Meanwhile, the BJP defended Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, saying he “cannot be held responsible for everything that happens in the state”.

Party spokesman Ravishankar Prasad said a magistrate’s probe report that the state police shot them in cold blood was not final.

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