If Shah enters Gujarat, Sohrab case goes out: SC
The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to consider former Gujarat home minister Amit Shah’s plea to enter the state in view of the upcoming assembly polls, but said it would shift the murder trial of alleged gangster Sohrabuddin Sheikh to Maharashtra.delhi Updated: Aug 28, 2012 23:58 IST
The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to consider former Gujarat home minister Amit Shah’s plea to enter the state in view of the upcoming assembly polls, but said it would shift the murder trial of alleged gangster Sohrabuddin Sheikh to Maharashtra.
The CBI has filed a chargesheet against Shah for his alleged involvement in the fake encounter of Sheikh in November 2005. Though the former state minister is out on bail, he is staying outside Gujarat in adherence to an apex court order. Shah was arrested on July 25, 2010.
A bench of Justice Aftab Alam and Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai said Shah cannot remain outside the state for ever. It also expressed strong reservations against continuing the trial in Gujarat. “The trial has to go to Maharashtra.”
Subsequent to the request of Shah’s counsel, senior advocate Ram Jethmalani, to make short arguments on the issue of his client’s bail and transfer of the case, the court fixed September 4 as the next date of hearing.
At the outset of the hearing, Jethmalani submitted that the court should lift the condition that Shah should remain outside the state. “Don’t keep him away from political activities,” the counsel told the court.
Jethmalani even went to the extent of stating that his client could be kept under CBI lens if allowed to stay in Gujarat.
The court asked the CBI to take a decision on its probe relating to the killing of Tulsiram Prajapati, who was one of the key witnesses in Sheikh’s fake encounter. It made this comment after CBI counsel Vivek Tankha said the probe into the Prajapati case was complete, and the agency would file the chargesheet within a week. He also placed before the bench a fresh status report on the Prajapati case.