CBI arrests first IPS officer in Ishrat fake encounter
The CBI today arrested Gujarat IPS officer GL Singhal in connection with the Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case. Singhal was named in magistrate SP Tamang's report which stated that the 2004 encounter was fake. Mahesh Langa reports.india Updated: Feb 22, 2013 01:03 IST
The Central Bureau of investigation on Thursday arrested Gujarat IPS officer GL Singhal in connection with the Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case.
Ishrat, a 19-year-old college science student, and three others were allegedly killed by Ahmedabad Crime Branch in an encounter on June 15, 2004.
Police though maintain that Ishrat, Javed Sheikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were members of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, on a mission to kill chief minister Narendra Modi.
Over 20 policemen, including senior IPS officers, are allegedly involved in the fake encounter.
In September 2009, Ahmedabad metropolitan magistrate SP Tamang called the encounter fake. He recommended lodging of cases against 22 police officials.
The Gujarat high court in August 2010 asked the Supreme Court-appointed special investigation team headed by former CBI director RK Raghavan to take up the Ishrat case.
Singhal, a promoted IPS officer, was assistant commissioner of police with Crime Branch and was allegedly part of the team which kiled Ishrat and three others.
He is one of the key accused in the case besides DG Vanjara, who is already in jail in connection with Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, and PP Pande, presently additional DGP of Gujarat Police.
The SIT named around 20 policemen including three IPS officials in the complaint lodged with the central agency as per the HC directive.
While handing over the case to the central agency, the HC benched had remarked that the case was "exceptional and had national ramification."
The court had also held that the Gujarat Police could not be trusted to carry out impartial probe in the case.