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Ishrat fake encounter case: SIT raid on FSL

Ahmedabad: Close on the heels of raids on Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) in connection with Ishrat encounter in Gujarat SIT Special Investigation Team (SIT) has acquired all scientific evidence from the Forensic Science Laboratory at Ahmedabad in the Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case. An FSL official, opposing the SIT action, has filed an application against SIT with Zone IV DCP Amit Vishwakarma. The DCP, in turn, has handed the inquiry to ACP (F-Division) M V Mehta.

According to sources, an SIT team went to Meghaninagar FSL at around 8. 30 pm on March 3 and conducted a search operation. It took away several scientific evidences in the fake encounter case. These included crime scene data, ballistic data, hard-disks of computers and some CDs.

Before leaving the FSL premises, the SIT officers gave a receipt of the articles collected to show that they had collected evidence from FSL as part of investigation.

Laboratory sources claimed that SIT officials entered FSL premises without prior permission. One of the FSL officers went to Shahibaug police station to file a complaint which was rejected. After that he wrote an application to the Zone IV DCP

The forensic evidence tells a different story in the Gujarat encounter case and contradicts the FIR filed by the police. The ballistics and analysis of the crime scene and bodies have shown that the killings were staged and carried out in cold blood.

The Modi government is now taking a lot of heat from the Centre as well as from people and media. The reason being the paranoia of the Modi government that there is a plot to kill Narendra Modi for his alleged involvement in the Godhra riots.

Narendra Modi was depicted as a monster on many television media channels during and after the riots. They alleged that he deliberately let the police sit idle while the riots took place. However, support for Modi government remains strong in Gujarat and it will not be a surprise if he continues to be a prime contender for the post of Chief Minister in Gujarat in the future as well.

Such incidents should also draw our attention to the dire need for reforms in the police. Perhaps it is a truism but it is one that has to be repeated; the police have to be protected from political interference. A more serious problem is that every encounter death raises a storm of protest, but soon it is business as usual.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 March 2011 on page no. 20

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