A special CBI court on Monday awarded life imprisonment to four policemen - a Punjab Police inspector and three of Uttar Pradesh Police -- in a fake encounter case dating back to 1993.
The judgment comes two decades after the death of Harjit Singh, a resident of Saharan Majra in Ludhiana, who was kidnapped by the Punjab Police inspector and killed in a fake encounter with the help of the Uttar Pradesh police.
The court of special CBI judge Kanwaljit Singh convicted DSP RK Singh, inspector Brij Lal and constable Omkar Singh, all from Uttar Pradesh Police, and Punjab Police's inspector Harinder Singh. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 80,000 each on the UP cops and Rs 60,000 on Harinder Singh.
Giving details, CBI advocate SK Kantiwal said all policemen were held guilty under Sections 364 (kidnapping), 302 (murder) and 120-B (conspiracy) of the IPC.
Harjit was kidnapped by Harinder Singh, then ASI of Payal in Ludhiana, on October 6, 1993 from his house at Saharan Majra. And a week later, he was shown killed as terrorist in an encounter by the Uttar Pradesh police.
The case was registered against the accused on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana high court, where Harjit's father Mohinder Singh had filed a petition for a CBI probe in the kidnapping of his son.
Mohinder had approached the Punjab and Haryana high court in 1994, which ordered a CBI inquiry in 1996.
Following the court direction, the CBI probed the matter and registered a case against all four for murdering Harjit in a fake encounter in Sitapur of Uttar Pardesh on the night of October 12, 1993.
Mohinder welcomed the judgment saying he had won a long legal battle. On the other hand, RK Singh's wife Mithlesh Singh said they would appeal against the order in the high court.