CBI grills Shah for 2nd day, doesn't get satisfactory answers

CBI grills Shah for 2nd day, doesn't get satisfactory answers

Shah did not answer properly and in a way was not cooperating with investigation even today, a CBI source said, adding his interrogation is likely to continue tomorrow as well. The former minister of state for home, who is facing charges of murder, kidnapping and extortion in the fake encounter case, was questioned by a four-member CBI team and all the proceedings were recorded on an audio-visual medium.

Yesterday, CBI team led by chief investigating officer Amitabh Thakur had grilled Shah, a key aide of Chief Minister Narendra Modi, for over four hours in the jail premises. The court has allowed the investigating agency to quiz Shah inside the jail between July 28 and 30.

Shah is lodged in Tilak barrack of the prison after being arrested in the 2005 fake encounter of Sheikh and killing of his wife Kausar Bi by Gujarat Police. According to the charge sheet filed by CBI, police officials of Gujarat ATS and Rajasthan Special Task Force had allegedly stage managed the encounter of Sheikh, a suspected gangster, near Ahmedabad on November 26, 2005.

Shah had entrusted the job of eliminating Sohrabuddin to three senior IPS D G Vanzara, Rajkumar Pandiyan and Abhay Chudasama, former DCP of Ahmedabad city Crime Branch, the charge sheet said.

"Elimination of Sohrabuddin was being used for extortion by the accused persons to establish an element of fear in the minds of the businessmen and others," it said. The charge sheet further said that Shah was in constant touch over telephone with Vanzara, when Sohrabuddin and his wife Kausar Bi were in the custody of Gujarat Police.

It claimed that Vanzara was instructed to eliminate Kausar Bi by the former Gujarat junior home minister, as she was witness to Sohrabuddin's abduction. After the case was transferred to CBI in January, Shah directed Ajay Patel and Yashpal Chudasama, his close confidants, to "convince, coerce, threaten, influence the witnesses on his behalf to conceal the truth from CBI about the fake encounter of Sohrabuddin," the charge sheet said.