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Jessica Lal case: Tainted cops keep fingers crossed
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December 19, 2006 21:35 IST

With Manu Sharma behind the bars for the murder of model Jessica Lall, the policemen who allegedly botched up the initial investigation are keeping their fingers crossed.

The fate of the police officials who investigated the case initially will be decided when the high court takes up for hearing the case on findings of the Special Investigating Team set up by Delhi Police Commissioner K K Paul to look into the loopholes in the probe after a lower court had acquitted all accused in February.

The SIT, headed by Special Commissioner (Intelligence) U K Katna, had quizzed several senior officers including Arunachal Pradesh DGP Amod Kanth, Additional Commissioner Sudhir Yadav and Chandigarh Superintendent of Police Vivek Gogia.

"Action will be taken as per the court directions on the SIT findings," Paul said.

The police have already submitted three reports in the high court on their findings while the SIT is understood to have highlighted several departures from procedures in investigating the case.

The role of the ballistic expert of the Central Forensic Science Laboratory had also come under a cloud.

It was the CFSL report that had confirmed the two-weapon theory that was one of the reasons for the acquittal of all the accused by the lower court.

Paul had registered a case on March 6, 2006, to examine 'certain infirmities and a lot of material' that had come up in the aftermath of the acquittals in February.

Asked about the SIT probe, Katna told PTI that the case was being heard by the high court separately.

"Action will be taken as per the court directions in the case," he said.

Paul, who was the joint police commissioner (crime), had suggested in 2001 to the then Commissioner Ajai Raj Sharma that a probe be ordered against officials investigating the case.

Paul had then questioned the intention behind sending empty rounds of bullets fired at the Tamarind Court party for forensic examination to the CFSL when the weapon of offence had not been recovered.

He also suggested that a separate case of forgery be lodged.

The FIR filed on March 6 at the Mehrauli police station mentioned that efforts to save the accused by some officials, by illegal means, had been made on several occasions, clearly indicating that it was the result of a criminal conspiracy.

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