Sanction to prosecute 3 cops in Ishrat Jahan case rejected
Ahmedabad, Mar 21: The Gujarat government has refused sanction to prosecute three accused police officials including IPS officer G L Singhal in the 2004 Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case, the CBI told a court here on Saturday.
The Central Bureau of Investigation had sought permission from the state government to prosecute Singhal, Tarun Barot and Anaju Chaudhary on the direction of special judge V R Raval.
Under section 197 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, sanction is required for prosecuting government servants for anything done in the discharge of official duty.
"The Gujarat government has declined sanction for the prosecution of the three accused. We submitted the letter to the court today," said R C Kodekar, special prosecutor.
Inspector General of Police Singhal, retired police officers Barot and J G Parmar, and Chaudhary have filed applications before the court seeking "dropping of proceedings for want of requisite sanction".
Parmar died during the course of hearing.
In its order in October 2020, the court had observed that the police officers had "acted in their official duties," so the CBI was required to obtain prosecution sanction.
In 2019, the CBI court had dropped proceedings against former police officers DG Vanzara and NK Amin in the case after the state government similarly refused sanction.
In 2018, former in-charge Director General of Police PP Pandey was discharged from the case.
The CBI had named seven police officers-Pandey, Vanzara, Amin, Singhal, Barot, Parmar and Chaudhary-as accused in its first charge sheet filed in 2013.
Ishrat Jahan, a 19-year-old woman from Mumbra near Mumbai, was killed alongwith Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjadali Akbarali Rana and Zeeshan Johar by Gujarat police in an 'encounter' near Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004.
The police claimed the four were terrorists who were planning to assassinate then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
However, a High Court-appointed Special Investigation Team concluded that the encounter was fake, after which the CBI registered a case against police officials