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Skeletons in Delhi’s closet

Pradeep Goyal, 32, was a businessman. His case exposed the Delhi police and its claim of “With you, for you, always”.
None | By Sanjeev K Ahuja and Vijaita Singh, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 09, 2007 03:42 AM IST

Pradeep Goyal, 32, was a businessman. His case exposed the Delhi police and its claim of “With you, for you, always”.

Fate: In March 1997, Goyal and his friend were travelling in a Maruti Esteem when a squad of 14 plainclothes policemen reportedly stopped their car in the crowded Connaught Place area. The policemen then allegedly sprayed the car with bullets. Goyal died on the spot.

Family: His wife Neema, who was a housewife, had to qualify herself for a job in order to run the house and bring up her son, then just two years old. She eventually did a B.Ed and started working as a teacher in a private school. She has been fighting the case against the policemen, but said she keeps a low profile because the accused are out on bail. In November, she hired a lawyer to expedite the case.

Case: The case against 10 policemen, including senior officer Satbir Rathi, charged with murdering Goyal and his friend, continues in the CBI court. Nikhil Kumar, the then Police Commissioner and now a Congress parliamentarian, was transferred. A formal case was registered against the accused policemen on the directions of the then Lieutenant Governor. Charges were framed 18 months after Goyal’s death.

The police first claimed Goyal and his friend were Mohammed Yaseen and his associate, but they later admitted that it was a case of “bona fide” mistaken identity. The police had been hunting for Yaseen for his suspected involvement in various kidnappings and dacoity cases, and picked him up a week later without any exchange of fire.

“I have already waited for 10 years for justice,” said Neema, adding: “Recent events like the arrest of three IPS officers in Gujarat in a fake encounter case, have revived my hopes.”

Nazakat Nabi & Zulfikar Khan

Fate: Both of them were allegedly gunned down 10 months ago by a nine-member team of the Delhi police. The two were picked up from a court in Ghaziabad on July 31, 2006, where they had gone to attend a hearing of a case in which they were accused of murder.

Family: Nazakat’s father Gulam Nabi filed a case of kidnapping and murder against the nine cops at a Ghaziabad police station. Zulfikar’s father Babu Khan is also pursuing the case.

Case: The case against the nine policemen, who were later dismissed, is being heard by a Delhi court. The Delhi crime branch filed a charge sheet in October 2006 and arrested eight of them. One of them is absconding. The charge sheet said, one of the policemen, head constable Ashok Kumar had offered his subordinates Rs 2 lakh each and promised to get them promoted out of turn if they executed the killings. Kumar apparently had enmity with the two.

Two Pakistan national

Fate: They were killed by the elite Special Cell of the Delhi Police on November 3, 2002 in the basement of the posh Ansal Plaza shopping mall.

Case: No case has been registered against the policemen involved in the encounter. But two days after the shooting, one Dr Hari Krishna claimed he had witnessed the event and that the encounter was fake. He said a few men in plain clothes had pulled the two out of a car and gunned them down. Soon after, Krishna went into hiding, probably out of fear, because several false cases were filed against him.

The police claimed the two men were terrorists Dawood Ali and Ejaz, who had come to Delhi to plan an attack on the shopping mall before Diwali. The police said they had recovered an AK-47 rifle and 60 rounds from the men. Rajbir Singh executed the encounter. He has won five gallantry awards for encounters. He lived 200 metres away from Ansal Plaza.

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