Khwaja Yunus murder case: Accused cop Sachin Vaze, 3 constables reinstated in Mumbai police
Mumbai Police’s encounter specialist Sachin Vaze was accused along with three other cops of murdering Khwaza Yunus- a suspect in Ghatkopar blast caseUpdated: Jun 06, 2020 22:34 IST
Assistant police inspector Sachin Hindurao Vaze, an encounter specialist facing murder charges in the 2003 custodial death case of Khwaja Yunus, was reinstated on Saturday in the police force after having resigned on November 30, 2007.
In fact, three other policemen also accused in the same case; Rajendra Tiwari, Rajaram Nikam and Sunil Desai were reinstated via an executive order dated June 6, 2020 which revoked the suspension of 14 other policemen as well.
Deputy commissioner of police and Mumbai police spokesperson Pranay Ashok confirmed that Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh has revoked suspension of assistant police inspector Sachin Vaze and police constables Rajendra Tiwari, Rajaram Nikam and Sunil Desai. API Waze was posted in Naigaon police headquarters.
Neither Mumbai police commissioner Parambir Singh nor joint commissioner of police (law and order) Vinoy Kumar Choubey responded to messages or calls.
Additional chief secretary (home) Sanjay Kumar said, “I am not aware that he was reinstated because I am out of the city since three days and without checking the files, I cannot say anything”. When asked if a police officer can be reinstated pending trial, Kumar said, “For a specific answer I need to check the file. Because in most cases trials continue while a department enquiry is closed.”
Vaze was suspended on March 3, 2004 after he and three other policemen were charged with murder for Yunus’s custodial death. He resigned three years later after his repeated requests for reinstatement were rejected by the government.
After his resignation, Vaze joined Shiv Sena. While talking to Hindustan Times then, he had said that he had even donated his provident fund money to the police welfare fund. Interestingly, despite his resignation, Vaze’s name had made it into the list of police officers to be promoted to the rank of police inspector in December 2009. Vaze, on Saturday, responded to a text message from Hindustan Times with a smiley and folded hand emoticon.
Khwaja Yunus, a suspect in the December 2, 2002 Ghatkopar bomb blast case, was reported missing on January 7, 2003 after the police claimed he had escaped from the vehicle taking him to Aurangabad for investigation. Yunus’s family moved the high court, which transferred the case to the state criminal investigation department (CID). The CID, after investigating Yunus’s disappearance, concluded it to be a case of custodial death and booked Vaze and three other officers for murder and destruction of evidence.
Senior counsel Mihir Desai, representing Khwaja Yunus’ family, expressed shock over the development and said, “The officers should not have been reinstated considering the fact that the state government itself filed a charge sheet against them. This is nothing but a mockery of justice. There cannot be any valid justification, especially when the trial is pending and the cops are prosecuted by the government itself.”
The development came as a disappointment for Khwaja’s family as well. “It is really disappointing. We are not getting justice and we have been fighting for so many years. We will consider taking legal steps after discussion with our lawyers,” said Hussain, Khwaja’s younger brother