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Evading summons case: HC breather for Bhatt

January 30, 2012 21:19 IST

The Gujarat high court on Monday stayed all proceedings against suspended IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt in connection with a complaint filed against him for furnishing false information with intention of evading summons in the case pertaining to the alleged wrongful confinement of a police constable.

Justice Anant S Dave hearing the case admitted Bhatt's petition seeking quashing of the complaint against him and scheduled it for final hearing in last week of February.

In his petition filed in November last year, Bhatt had contended that there was no base for the complaint and hence it needed to be quashed and the inquiry ordered by the magistrate on the complaint be stopped.

He said that the offence as alleged in the complaint under section 172 (absconding to avoid service of summons) and 177 (furnishing false information) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) are prima facie not constituted or made out.

Finding substance in Bhatt's contentions, the court admitted the petition and scheduled it for final hearing in the last week of the next month.

The complaint was filed in October last year by ACP N C Patel, investigating officer in the case where Bhatt was accused of threatening and wrongfully confining constable K D Pant and making him sign false affidavits.

In his complaint Patel had alleged that Bhatt was summoned to remain present before him on September 30, 2011 but he did not do so and instead wrote a letter saying that he was to appear before Nanavati Commission probing the 2002 riots case on the same day.

Patel had further claimed that it was revealed during the probe conducted by him that neither did Bhatt go to Nanavati Commission nor did he have any hearing before it.

Based on this, Patel filed a complaint against Bhatt under sections 172 (absconding to avoid service of summons) and 177 (furnishing false information) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), in a local court.

Bhatt was arrested on September 30 last year in connection with an FIR filed against him by police constable K D Pant for allegedly threatening, wrongfully confining, restraining and making him sign a false affidavit.

The affidavit in question was in connection with Bhatt's presence at the February 27, 2002 meeting called by Chief Minister Narendra Modi after the Godhra train burning incident.

Bhatt, who had alleged complicity of Modi in the 2002 riots, was granted bail by a local court here on October 17, last year.

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