Out of the 19 accused in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case, eight including former Gujarat Minister Amit Shah on Friday appeared before a magistrate's court in Mumbai.
The trial of the case has been shifted by the Supreme Court from Gujarat to Mumbai. The local court, three days ago, had issued summons to all the accused.
After the court on Friday marked the presence of the eight accused, the Central Bureau of Investigation filed an application seeking fresh production warrants against remaining 11, including former IPS officers D G Vanjara, Rajkumar Pandian and Abhay Chudasma, who are lodged in Ahmedabad's Sabarmati jail.
They were to be brought in Mumbai on Friday, but jail authorities could not arrange the travel in time.
Additional Metropolitan Magistrate A A Khan directed the eight accused including Shah, who are on bail, to furnish fresh bail bonds.
Khan also sought clarification on the status of three accused -- A K Parmar, Santram Sharma and V K Rathod, as CBI had said in the chargesheet that their names were being removed from the list of accused. CBI lawyer said the agency will seek their discharge at the next hearing (November 23).
Sheikh, an alleged gangster, and his wife Kauser Bi were allegedly abducted by Gujarat's Anti-Terrorism Squad from Hyderabad and killed in fake encounter near Gandhinagar in November 2005.
Tulsiram Prajapati, a witness of the encounter, was also allegedly killed by police in December 2006.
According to CBI, Shah, former minister of state for home in Narendra Modi government, was the "kingpin" of conspiracy.
The Supreme Court on September 27 ordered transfer of case to Maharashtra as CBI stated that witnesses were being intimidated and a free and fair trial was not possible in Gujarat.
Image: Former Gujarat minister Amit Shah comes out of a Mumbai court on Friday
Photograph: Sahil Salve