The Rajasthan high court on Friday asked former Bharatiya Janata Party Minister Rajendra Singh Rathore to surrender before a trial court in Dara Singh fake encounter case, setting aside the lower court's order which had discharged him in the case.
The order came on revision petitions filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation and the wife of Dara Singh, a local liquor smuggler, who was allegedly killed in the fake encounter in 2006.
The district and sessions judge here on May 31 had discharged the former minister and party chief whip in the Assembly in the case wherein CBI had roped him as the main accused and conspirator for staging the fake encounter. The trial court had discharged Rathore as it had not found material evidence to frame charges against him.
Allowing the petitions, the high court on Friday held that the sessions judge was not right in appreciating evidence at the stage of framing of charges which can be done only at the stage of trial.
Rathore will now have to face trial after framing up of charges against him.
Justice Ajay Rastogi, who delivered the judgment in a jam pack court room, also permitted the CBI to force Rathore's surrender in case he does not willingly surrender before court.
According to the charge sheet filed by the CBI, Dara Singh was allegedly detained illegally by officials of a Special Operations Group, who took him to an isolated place near Amber and killed him.
Rathore, who was the Parliamentary Affairs Minister at the time of the incident, was arrested on April 5 for his alleged involvement in the fake encounter.