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Uphaar victims appeal for rejection of Ansals bail

By Staff
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New Delhi, Apr 18 (UNI) The Association of the Victims of Uphaar Tragedy (AVUT) today appealed to the Delhi High Court to reject the bail of Uphaar Cinema owner Sushil Ansal, for allegedly tampering of evidence produced before the trial court.

Senior Counsel K T S Tulsi appearing for the AVUT before Justice R C Jain said that tampering of evidence was a serious offence and the probe instituted by the District Court had held the Ahlmad (Record Keeper) responsible for the missing documents from the court records.

The documents, which were missing from the records were vital as these were relied upon by the High Court while framing charges against Sushil and his relatives, said Mr Tulsi.

Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra appearing for the CBI submitted that the court should look into the angle of conspiracy behind the missing documents and order for a thorough probe.

The missing documents pertained to minutes of board meetings of the Uphaar cinema, cheques issued by Sushil Ansal and documents relating to sanction by the Delhi Fire Authorities.

Mr Tulsi said the Ahlmad could not have destroyed the documents on his own and there was a deeper conspiracy into the episode.

However, Counsel R K Naseem appearing for Ansals argued that the Ansals did not tamper with the documents and the trial might not have any impact had the documents gone missing.

The court records had been reconstituted and the arguments were at the final stage in the District Court, he said.

On April 5, the High Court had summoned the Report of Inquiry conducted by an Additional Session Judge on the tampering of evidence of Uphaar tragedy case.

The Ahlmad was dismissed from service for deliberately destroying the court papers.

It was a serious offence and the bail of the accused should be rejected as he might further tamper with the evidence, the petition said.

The trial court had framed charges against 16 accused, including proprietors of Ansals properties Sushil Ansal and Gopal Ansal, for their alleged involvement in the Uphaar fire tragedy on June 13, 1997 which left 59 dead and more than 100 injured.

The other accused in the case include PWD engineer S N Dandona, cinema hall director R M Puri, cinema hall managers K L Malhotra, R K Sharma, N S Chopra and Ajit Chaudhary, DVB officials A K Gera, B M Satija and Beer Singh, MCD officials N D Tiwari and Shyam Sunder Sharma, Delhi Fire Service officials H S Panwar and Surinder Dutt, besides balcony usher Manmohan Unniyal.

UNI PAT PA KP1912

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