CBI denied sanction to prosecute IB officials

Probe agency suspects their role in Ishrat killing

CBI denied sanction to prosecute IB officials

The government has turned down a request from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to grant sanction to prosecute four Intelligence Bureau (IB) officials, including Special Director Rajender Kumar, in the killing of Ishrat Jahan and three others.

The issue of sanction of prosecution had become a matter of confrontation between the two agencies and during the last leg of the UPA government, there were a lot of deliberations in the Union Home Ministry on the matter.

Official sources said the Home Ministry rejected CBI’s plea after going through the documents provided by it and deliberating on the circumstances and other records. The CBI had submitted its report two years ago and since then the matter was not decided though there were a series of meetings.

“After a detailed examination of facts, circumstances and records made available to the MHA in respect of the case, the sanction was denied,” a Home Ministry spokesperson said.

Sources said this decision was expected as the Home Ministry from the beginning was not keen on prosecuting the IB officials. They felt CBI depended heavily on circumstantial evidences and that cannot be the ground for giving sanction in the case.

Former IB Director Asif Ibrahim had opposed the move to prosecute his officers during his tenure, which ended in December last year.

The CBI had sought sanction to prosecute Kumar and three other officers — P Mittal, MK Sinha and Rajiv Wankhede.

Kumar and other IB officers were accused by the CBI of being part of a conspiracy to stage-manage the killing of Ishrat and three others in a fake encounter in 2004 after planting evidence that they were LeT operatives out to kill Narendra Modi, who was then Gujarat chief minister.

The CBI had alleged that Kumar had generated the intelligence input against Ishrat and others. The agency also alleged that Kumar conspired with Gujarat Police to stage the encounter.

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