The CBI is questioning intelligence bureau (IB) special director Rajinder Kumar in connection with his role in the fake encounter of Mumbra girl Ishrat Jahan and three others by Ahmedabad police in 2005. Kumar is being grilled at an unspecified location in Gandhinagar.
This is for the first time in the history, a top official of the IB is being probed for his role in staged killings of four persons, who were described as terrorists linked with Pakistan-based LeT, which was on a issuing to target Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi post 2002 anti-Muslim riots in the state.
The CBI sources have ruled out his arrest in the case at this point of time.
This is the second time Kumar is being grilled by the probe agency in the case. Kumar is a special dire for of the country's premier intelligence agency IB. A 1979 batch IPS offficer of Manipur and Tripura cadre, Kumar was posted in Gujarat heading the IB unit from 2001 to 2005.
He is accused of providing false intelligence alert to facilitate the staged gunfight in which four persons were bumped off, providing weapon and also procuring prior custody of two of the four persons.
The CBI's summon to Kumar triggered a bitter face off between CBI and IB, the latter accusing the former of targeting its official. Defending its top cop, the IB director had written a letter to the CBI director regarding the unsubstantiated links of Ishrat and others with Pakistan-based terror outfit.
The CBI director Ranjit Sinha had also stuck to the agency's position contending that the agency had gathered "strong evidence against the officer who was part of the conspiracy" that led to the fake encounter killings of four persons.
The matter had reached to the Prime Minister Office where a series of meetings between directors of IB, CBI, national security advisor (NSA) and home secretary were held to sort out the issue.
Meanwhile, a Gujarat high court division bench, which is monitoring the probe, is scheduled to pass its order on how long Gujarat cadre IPS officer Satish Verma can assist the CBI in the case. The CBI has sought Verma's assistance till the charge sheet is filed in the high profile case.
Last week, the high court haMahesh Langad slammed the Narendra Modi government for trying to hinder the CBI probe in the case say "even if the persons were terrorists, nobody had license to liquidate them."
The bench comprising Justice Jayant Patel and Justice Abhilasha Kumari had also ticked off the CBI for not filing the charge sheet within stipulated time that resulted into default bail of several accused who were previously arrested by the agency.