New Delhi, July 25: A team of seven police officials had barged into an apartment at Batla House on Sept 13, 2008. The Delhi Police team had encountered a gang of four people who were alleged to be members of terror group Indian Mujahideen (IM). Two alleged terrorists and a police inspector were killed during the open firing between the two groups. The cops had arrested one suspected terrorist and the fourth one had managed to escape.
The sole arrested suspect was identified as Shahzad Ahmad, a resident of Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh.A Delhi Court on Thursday, July 25 convicted Ahmad of opening fire at the Delhi Police killing one cop. Overruling all allegations against Delhi police, the court termed the encounter genuine.
Delhi Police had carried the raid at the Batla House after Sept 13, 2008 serial bomb blasts. Total 26 people died and 133 were injured during the serial blasts at Karol Bagh, Connaught Place, Greater Kailash and India Gate.
It was said that the police team had received information regarding four suspected IM terrorists, who were allegedly involved in Delhi serial blasts. Batla House is situated at Jamianagar area in Delhi.
Delhi: Batla House-post encounter
Police and residents during the Batla House encounter in New Delhi in Sept 2008. A Delhi court on Thursday ruled that the encounter was genuine and convicted lone suspected Indian Mujahideen operative Shahzad Ahmed of killing Delhi police inspector MC Sharma.
Delhi: Police rush to Batla House before encounter
Policemen rush to Batla House during the encounter in New Delhi in Sep 2008. A Delhi court on Thursday ruled that the encounter was genuine and convicted lone suspected Indian Mujahideen operative Shahzad Ahmed of killing Delhi police inspector MC Sharma.
Police team at Batla House in 2008
Officials of the special cell of the Delhi Police at the stairs of Batla House during the encounter in New Delhi in Sept 2008.
Batla House Encounter: Cop who was killed
File photo of Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma who was killed during the Batla House encounter in New Delhi in Sept 2008.
Batla House Encounter: The sole convicted terrorist
Indian Mujahideen (IM) terrorist Shahzad Ahmed is produced in a court in New Delhi (file photo). A Delhi court on Thursday convicted Shahzad Ahmed in 2008 Batla House encounter case.
Mohan Chand Sharma, an encounter specialist and Delhi Police inspector, too was killed during the raid. However, many politicians and activists raised questions regarding Sharma's death. They alleged the encounter was fake and Sharma was shot dead due to "inter-departmental rivalry".
However, a post-mortem report ruled out speculation that Sharma was shot from the back - which would have meant he was not shot by the accused.
Many other raised questions on the genuineness of the encounter as one of the alleged suspects was shot multiple times at close range. The judge earlier had asked why the police inspector, Sharma, was not wearing a bulletproof jacket while facing men believed to be deadly terrorists.
Lawyer of the accused also cited ballistic reports to show that the bullets found in the officer's body did not match the gun seized from Shahzad. National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) in 2009 had said the police had not violated any rights.
Ahmad's lawyer had been arguing that Ahmad was not present in the Batla House when Delhi police entered the house. However, the prosecution had claimed that it had sufficient circumstantial evidence and phone records to prove that Shahzad was indeed present in the Batla house on the fateful day of Sept 13, 2008.
Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh had claimed that the encounter was "fake" and sought minute investigation. Despite the recent court order, Singh claimed that he would maintain his stand on the controversy.