A special CBI court on Friday convicted eight policemen in connection with a police encounter in Madhopur area of Gonda district in which 13 people, including deputy superintendent of police (Dy SP) KP Singh, were killed in 1982.
Special CBI judge Rajendra Singh delivered the judgment and said the quantum of punishment would be decided on April 5. All the eight convicted policemen, who were present in the court, have been sent to jail.
In all 19 people were made accused in the encounter in which 10 people died during the trial while head constable Prem Singh has been relieved of all charges.
The convicted policemen are PAC platoon commander Ramakant Dixit, the then SHO of Madhopur police station R B Saroj, sub-inspectors Naseem Ahmed, Mangal Singh, Parvez Hussain, Rajendra Prasad Singh, head constable Prem Narain Pandey and constable Ram Karan.
The encounter took place in March 1982 when deputy SP and circle officer K P Singh was killed and then the police gunned down 12 people. According to one version, the other policemen shot the Dy SP in the head from behind.
While R B Saroj, Ramkant, Ram Karan Singh were held guilty for hatching a conspiracy and murder of Deputy SP K P Singh and others, all the other five accused were held responsible for conspiracy and for suppressing the facts to bail out some other accused.
The then SP of Gonda Yashpal Singh claimed that the police officer fell to criminals’ bullet during an encounter. However, KP Singh’s wife Vibha Singh termed it a well-orchestrated killing of her husband by the local police personnel as some officers were not happy with him.
The local officers at that time refused to take cognizance of the matter following which Vibha Singh knocked the door of the high court which ordered a CBI probe. The case had sent shockwaves in the state. The CBI took over the case in 1984 and filed a charge-sheet in 1986.
The probe by the premier investigating agency found the allegations of Vibha Singh true and the investigating team claimed that K P Singh was killed in cold blood by the local cops.
All the 19 policemen chargsheeted were posted in Gonda at the time of the killing.
With agency inputs.