An extortion case filed 15 years ago has come to haunt dismissed encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma, who is awaiting the verdict in the Lakhan Bhaiyya fake encounter case.
A metropolitan magistrate court in Bandra has issued summons to Sharma, after adding him as an accused in an extortion case filed by scrap dealer Tariq Ahmed in 1999. The case was initially registered only against Daya Nayak.
Sharma and police officer Shiva Thackrey were added as accused in the case by the sessions court in December 2010. There was, however, no progress in the case till 2013.
Magistrate RN Ambantkar has asked Sharma and Thackrey to appear before the court by June 27.
Sharma, who is currently lodged in jail, would be served the summons through jail authorities. Thackrey, an inspector with the Aurangabad crime branch, would be served the notice through the commissioner office of Aurangabad police.
Ahmed's lawyer OP Dubey said, "We have waited for many years. The court has finally issued summons to the policemen, who would now face trial in the case as accused."
On March 19, 1997, while Ahmed was on his way, Nayak, Sharma and five others blocked his way. Claiming that they had orders from their superiors to 'bump him off', they demanded Rs5 lakh to save his life. Ahmed alleged that the amount was later reduced to Rs2 lakh, which he paid the next day. However, within 15 days of the incident, Nayak allegedly demanded more money from Ahmed. Ahmed then filed a complaint with the National Human Rights Commission, which ordered the city police commissioner to inquire into the allegations. On July 24, 1998, the police commissioner wrote to the state CID, which later registered a case of extortion and abduction.
The state CID had, in 1999, filed a charge sheet, which only listed Nayak as an accused. During the trial, the court recorded the testimony of Ahmed, where he named Sharma and Thackrey.
On the basis of the evidence, Ahmed had, in January 2008, made an application before the magistrate court to add Sharma and Thackrey as accused in the case. The magistrate court had, in September 2008, rejected his application.
Ahmed had then moved the sessions court, which added him as accused in 2010.