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Rediff.com  » News » Sohrab case: Judge recuses from hearing Chudasama's bail plea

Sohrab case: Judge recuses from hearing Chudasama's bail plea

October 14, 2011 17:17 IST
A Gujarat high court judge on Friday recused himself from hearing the bail plea of suspended Indian Police Service officer Abhay Chudasama who was arrested on the charge of being the key conspirator in the 2005 Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case.

When the matter came up for hearing before Justice Z K Saiyed, he recused himself from the case by saying 'not before me'. He did not give any reasons for it. Now the matter will be sent to the chief justice who will assign the case to another judge.

On August 16, Special Central Bureau of Investigation Judge R M Parmar had rejected Chudasama's bail plea and observed that the officer was accused in a heinous crime and claimed to be the key conspirator in the case by the prosecuting agency CBI and hence, could not be granted bail.

The court had further said that if let off on bail, there was a possibility that the accused could tamper with evidence and influence witnesses.

Chudasama in his bail petition in the high court has claimed that he was being used as tool to get to former Gujarat minister of state for home Amit Shah who is also an accused in the case and now out on bail. He has further contended that he was the deputy commissioner of police at city crime branch when arrested by the CBI, and was innocent and wrongly implicated in the fake encounter case.

Chudasama has also sought bail on grounds of parity as some of the accused in the case have been granted bail by the high court. He said the accused like former Gujarat minister of state for home Amit Shah, alleged to be the 'king pin' behind the fake encounter, and one Raju Jirawala, were granted bail by courts and hence he was also entitled to be released on bail.

Claiming that the CBI just used him as a ladder to reach Shah, Chudasama had denied all charges against him including that of criminal conspiracy and destruction of evidence. He has also challenged all the statements of witnesses against him attached in the chargesheet filed by CBI, claiming that most of those witnesses who have spoken against him were arrested by him in the past.

In November 2005, Sohrabuddin Shiekh was killed in a police encounter on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. Later, his wife Kausar Bi was also killed a few days later.

A close aide of Sohrabuddin, who was witness to his killing, Tulsi Prajapati was also killed in a fake police encounter in December 2006. The CBI was told to investigate all the three killings by the Supreme Court.

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