Verma to seek copy of charge-sheet in Ishrat Jahan case

Ahmedabad: IPS officer Satish Verma who had probed the 2004 Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case today said he would seek a copy of the second charge-sheet filed before the special CBI court here so as to initiate legal action against the persons named in it.

He was going to file an application through his lawyer Rahul Sharma for this in the special CBI court in Ahmedabad, he told PTI. The charge-sheet names four Intelligence Bureau (IB) officials including Rajender Kumar.

The Centre has not yet sanctioned the prosecution of these four officers.

Verma said he will seek copy of the charge-sheet to initiate further legal action so that the case moves on.

Ishrat (19) who hailed from Mumbra near Mumbai, Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjadali Akbarali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were killed in a fake encounter with police on the outskirts of Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004.

Gujarat police had then claimed that Ishrat and others had links with the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba and had come to the city to kill the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

The controversial encounter is once again in news with former Home Secretary G K Pillai alleging that reference to Ishrat Jahan being an LeT operative was removed from the second affidavit filed by the Home Ministry, when P Chidambaram was the Home Minister.

Verma, a 1986 batch Gujarat cadre IPS officer, is now the Chief Vigilance Officer in North Eastern Electric Power Corporation, Shillong. He was a member of the SIT set up by the Gujarat High Court to probe the encounter.

After the SIT said it was a fake encounter, the HC handed over the case to CBI. Former under-secretary in the home ministry R V S Mani recently alleged that Verma, as a member of SIT, ‘tortured’ him to toe the CBI’s line.