Ahmedabad: The special court in Ahmedabad which granted bail to IPS officers PP Pandey and DG Vanzara in the 2004 Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case has noted that CBI has so far failed to throw light on the motive of the accused.
The detailed bail order, passed on Thursday, became available on Friday.
“The entire chargesheet is completely silent on the aspect of motive,” the CBI court judge KR Upadhyaya said.
Both the officers were charge sheeted by CBI in August 2013. According to the agency, Mumbra-based Ishrat Jahan (19), Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjadali Akbarali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were killed by Gujarat police on the outskirts of the city on 15 June, 2004 in a fake encounter.
In the bail order in Pandey’s case, the court, citing a Supreme Court judgement in a similar case, noted that “Gujarat cops were not working at the behest of any private party”.
Also, CBI never disputed defence lawyers’ argument that the encounter victims had a nexus with terrorist organisations, the court pointed out.
“This is not a case of contract killing. A balance is required to be stuck to safeguard individual liberty as well as the welfare of the society…with reference to case of the prosecution,” the court added.
Citing the statement of Pandey’s commando officer Mohan Nanji, it noted that “the witness has not stated anything involving the applicant (Pandey) accused in the commission of crime….he has stated that before reaching the scene he himself was not aware that encounter was to take place”.
” (therefore)…it can reasonably be assumed that not every police officer was aware regarding the same.”
In Vanzara’s case, the court said that “it appears that no overt act has been attributed to the present applicant right from the beginning till end”.