A witness in the alleged fake encounter case of suspected Chhota Rajan aide, Ramnarayan Gupta alias Lakhan Bhaiyya, has told the Special Investigation Team (SIT) that unidentified persons had dumped Gupta’s body at the spot where the alleged encounter took place.
The witness, advocate Ganesh Iyer, also said that a team of police officers later came to the spot, fired some rounds in the air and left with the body.
Iyer and the victim’s brother, Ramprasad, had visited the spot after the ‘encounter’ on November 11, 2006. Iyer’s statement that has been incorporated in the SIT’s chargesheet, which Hindustan Times has a copy of, states the watchman posted at Magnus Opus building had narrated the sequence of events to him.
The investigation was handed over to SIT after Gupta’s brother moved the Bombay High Court on November 15, 2006 alleging that the police had murdered his brother.
The SIT has arrested 11 people, including encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma and senior police inspector Pradeep Suryavanshi, in connection with the alleged fake encounter. Ten accused are still absconding.
Another witness in the case, Yunus Sheikh, has told the SIT that Gupta was killed at the behest of Janardhan Bange alias Janya Seth, a Navi Mumbai-based builder and close associate of Sharma.
Sheikh, who used to work with Bange, has said that on the day of the encounter Gupta was asked to speak to Bange who sarcastically asked Gupta how he was feeling. An Ahmedabad-based friend of Bange’s had narrated the incident to Sheikh.
A third witness, Dhiraj Mehta, has said he had not disclosed all the facts when his statement was first recorded, on August 27, 2009.
Mehta, a shopkeeper, has stated that a woman lawyer had told him to change his statement. “I changed the statement because I felt my family would be hara-ssed,” he said in his second statement recorded on February 1.