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HC orders security for BSF whistle-blower

March 24, 2005 21:01 IST
Last Updated: March 25, 2005 02:44 IST

The Delhi high court on Thursday asked the Border Security Force to ensure the safety and security of a constable who had moved the court seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation probe into the alleged killing of a Kashmiri youth by a commandant of the force in a fake encounter.

A Division Bench of Justice B A Khan and Justice Anil Kumar asked BSF Deputy Inspector General (Operations) J S Bhalla, who was present in the court, to file an affidavit within two weeks in this regard.

The court also asked him to transfer petitioner Subhash Rathod to a place out of Kashmir where he could use his mobile phone to be in touch with his family and counsel.

Observing that it was a question of the whistle-blower's security, the court said he needed to be protected.

The court also directed the BSF to file a copy of the records pertaining to the proceedings of the inquiry into the alleged fake encounter. The court said the photocopies of the records will be kept with deputy registrar.

The petitioner's counsel, B K Kulshrestha, expressed apprehension that the records might be tampered with.

Earlier, Bhalla submitted that the BSF was ready to consider Rathod's request for a transfer. However, Rathod cannot be allowed to use cell phones at his present place of posting as no jawan was allowed to use mobile phones in Kashmir, the DIG said.

Rathod had urged the court to issue directions for his personal safety, transfer to Delhi, Bangalore or Hazaribagh and permission to use a cell phone.

The court adjourned the hearing to August 12.

On December 7, 2004, the court had issued notices to the Union home secretary and BSF Director General on Rathod's petition.

Rathod, who belongs to the Jammu and Kashmir-based BSF's 42nd battalion, had accused Commandant Narender Singh of killing a youth in the intervening night of November 7-8, 2003.

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