As final arguments in Sohrabuddin Shaikh begin, a glance at what the case is all about
Mumbai, Dec 3: The final arguments in the Sohrabuddin Shaikh and Tulsiram Prajapati encounter cases will begin today.
The Central Bureau of Investigation, which probed the case will open the final arguments through public prosecutor, B P Raju. The case is being heard by the Additional Sessions Judge S J Sharma, who is presiding over the special CBI court.
Arguments by the CBI will be held on Monday and Tuesday, following which the defence lawyers would advance arguments. Following this the verdict would be reserved and the judgment is expected before the end of the year.
Let us begin the final arguments from December 3 onwards, S J Sharma, judge of the special CBI court in Mumbai said. The judge announced the date after completing the process of recording the statements of the accused under Section 313 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
The case of the prosecution was that Shaikh had connections with the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and was also conspiring to eliminate an important political personality. In all there were 38 accused in the case, but 16 were discharged. 15 were discharged by the special CBI court and one by the Bombay High Court.
The trial saw a total of 210 prosecution witnesses being examined. 92 have however turned hostile.
The case was transferred to Mumbai in 2010 following a request by the CBI for a trial. In 2013, the Supreme Court had clubbed the case relating to the killing of Prajapati with the Shaikh encounter case. In 2014, the special CBI judge in Mumbai discharged Amit Shah and 16 other co-accused while citing lack of evidence against them.
Who is facing trial:
Himanshu Singh Rajawat
Narayan Singh Jat
CP Srinivasa Rao
Kiran Singh Chauhan
Karan Singh Sishodia
Discharged from the case:
Amit Shah, Minister of state for home, Gujarat (now BJP president)
Gulab Chand Katatia- Home minister, Rajasthan
Prashant Pande- DGP, Gujarat
Om Prakash Mathur- Additional DGP, Gujarat
Geeta Johri- IG, Gujarat
Vimal Patni- marble businessman from Rajasthan
D G Vanzara- DIG, Gujarat ATS
N S Balasubramanian- SP, Andhra Pradesh
Vipul Aggarwal- SP, Gujarat
Rajkumar Pandian- SP, Gujarat
Dinesh M N- SP, Rajasthan
Abhay Chudasama- SP, Gujarat
Ajay Patel- Gujarat
Yashpal Singh Chudasama- Gujarat
Narendra Amin- DySP, Gujarat
Dalpat Singh Rathod- Head Constable, Rajasthan
The case at a glance:
On November 23 2005, Shaikh, his wife, Kausar Bi and Prajapati were allegedly abducted by police teams from Gujarat and Rajasthan, when they were travelling to Sangli from Hyderabad.
Two days later, Prajapati was taken by the Rajasthan police to Udaipur and was arrested. The next day, Shaikh was shot dead in an alleged fake encounter in a place between Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar. It was claimed that he was a notorious gangster with links to the Lashkar-e-Tayiba.
On November 29 Kausar Bi was allegedly raped, strangled to death and cremated at Illol. On December 26 2006, Prajapati was shot dead at Amreli district. The police said that he had escaped from custody, following which a manhunt was launched. They shot at him after he opened fire after being cornered the police also said.
Following this Shaikh's brother and Prajapati's mother moved the Supreme Court. The cases were then transferred to the CBI and the trial was ordered to be conducted in Mumbai.