An audio clip allegedly featuring walkie-talkie conversations of police officials handling their “encounter” with SIMI operatives early this week has surfaced, fuelling further suspicion that cops were keen to kill — not capture alive — the eight men who “jumped” jail.
The tape doing the rounds on social media — its authenticity was yet to be confirmed — indicates the SIMI men were carrying arms.
The new clip comes after a few video visuals of the alleged Monday morning “police encounter” with the eight activists of the banned Islamic organisation went viral. The men, who were said to have jumped Bhopal Central Jail on Diwali night, were killed near Malikheda on the outskirts of the state capital.
Speaking to HT on the authenticity of the audio clip, IG Bhopal, Yogesh Choudhary said that the whole incident is under investigation.
“It is a matter of investigation. CID is already probing the incident, I cannot comment on that,” Choudhary said.
According to sources, the audio conversation involves a senior police official, the personnel at police control room (PCR) and the police officials present at the encounter site at Khijradev village under Gunga police station.
The senior police official asks on the walkie-talkie whether all the five (of the eight) men were fleeing together. “Kya paanchon saath me bhaag rahe hain”, (Are all the five escaping together?) goes the question. To this, one of the police officials at the encounter site responds in the positive: “Haan, paanhcon saath me bhaag rahe hain.”(Yes, the five are together”)
The senior police official then tells them not to back off and kill them after rounding them up: “Bilkul piche nahi hatna hai. Gherke poora kardo kaam tamaam” (Don’t back off...Surround them and finish them).
One of the police officials then says the SIMI men were firing at them.
To this, the senior official commands to “do retaliatory firing after taking a proper position”. He further asks his colleagues not to spare the men if they have fired—and further informs the cops that another police party was reaching the spot. “Proper position lekar fire karo, jisse crossfire na ho,” ( Take proper position and then fire to avoid crossfiring) he adds.
After a few seconds, a police official at the site says they have killed five of the SIMI men. The senior official congratulates the cops, and says that they were about to reach the location.
One of the police officials at the site says that they have rounded the remaining ones at the top of the hillock where they were standing.
A police official at the PCR seeks confirmation on whether the five were dead. Yes, says a police official at the site.
The senior official again congratulates them: “Shabash. Bache huye teeno ko bhi nahi chodna hai, maar dalo” (Well done. Dont’ spare the other three, kill them).
A police official at the site then demands two or three ambulances at the site to which the police personnel at PCR say that they have already sent them.
The senior police official then again says that kill them all. “Bas unhe maar daalo. Yadi ye ghayal hote hain to hume unka aspatal me dhyaan rakhna padega. Agar nahi mar rahe hai to maar daalo saalon ko. (Just kill them. If they only get injured, we’ll have to take them to hospital and take care of them. If they aren’t dead, just kill the chaps.”)
A police official at the site then says: “Sir is saying ‘kill all of them’.”
‘Paanch mar chuke hain, sabhi ko maar daalo (five are dead, kill all)” says the senior police official.
One of the officials at the site then asks to leave one of the men alive, adding what will happen if they kill all of them.
Replies the senior official: “Nahi nahi nahi, wo bhi fire kar rahe hain na. Hum keh sakte hain ki hume hathiyar mile hain (No no, they are firing too. We can say we got weapons (from them).”
Then one of the officials at the site says they have killed all the eight men: “Sir humne sabhi aathon ko maar daala”.
All the police officers on the walkie-talkie rejoice. Sounds of cheers can be heard.
A police official at the spot says “humne unhe gher lia hai, wo yahan beech me pade huye hain” (we have rounded them up; they were lying in between). The reinforcements need not to come to the top of the hillock, he adds.
“Jo baaki force pahunch rahi hai, unhe upar aane ki zarurat nahi hai, bata do kuch aur farzi operation karna pade to,” (There is no need to send the force at the top of the hillock...tell them in case we need to do another fake encounter) says the same official at the site.
The senior official then says not to worry and they were coming: “Hum pahuch rahe hain. Hum pahuch rahe hain. Chinta mat karo. (We are reaching there, don’t worry)”
He then asks the police officials at the site to stop shooting. At this, a police personnel at the PCR asks all the police officials on the hillock to stand in their positions and stop shooting ahead of verification of the dead SIMI men.