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Fact finding team finds loopholes in Delhi encounter
Vicky Nanjappa
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September 26, 2008 16:05 IST

A fact finding team which visited Jamia Nagar where the Delhi [Images] police killed two alleged terrorists linked to the Delhi serial blasts has stated that there is clear evidence to show that the bullets fired on Sajid's head were from point blank range. The photographs after autopsy of Sajid, 17, show that there were seven gun shots to his head and it was from point blank range.

The fact finding team comprised teachers, students, civil rights activists and intellectuals. The team comprised 14 persons which included, Professor Siddique Hassan, deputy amir, Jamat-e-Islami Hind, SAR Geelani, reader, Zakir Hussain College, Delhi University, Dr Karen Gabriel, reader, St. Stephens, Banojyotsna Lahiri (Jawaharlal Nehru University), Vanessa Chisti (JNU) and Sumati Panikkar (independent researcher) among others.

The committee says that in case the shots had been fired from a distance then the wounds would have opened up, but in this case that had not happened.

The team which started investigations on September 24 at Jamia Nagar says that even five days after the encounter the tension was palpable. People were scared to talk to the fact-finding team. The stress and tension, generated after the encounter, was evident. People were nervous and requesting the team not to mention their names under any circumstances.

The lane leading up to the House No. L-18 has been barricaded. No person is allowed to enter the house and the police say that permission is needed before getting close to the building, but entering the house was ruled out. Even the people staying in the nearby buildings also had to go through the police scanner.

The heavy presence of the police, in uniform and plainclothes, has only aggravated the situation.

The flat where the 'encounter' took place in sealed. The alleged seizure of weapons, laptop, etc, from the flat was done without any proper witness, the team said. None of the members of the flat or the locality were witness to the high profile 'seizure', the team said.

The team said they could not find a single person in the locality who believed the police version of events.

Some witnesses told team that the 'terrorists' were just ordinary youngsters who had taken their careers and studies seriously. These witnesses have said that initially there were gunshots for 15 minutes. Then it stopped for a while. Then after a while the police went on firing intermittently for sometime to show that it was a real encounter. In between, the police went on shouting loudly to create a feeling of real exchange of fire and project a real encounter. The witnesses also said after the firing, the police had destroyed the flowerpots of the L-18 flat and adjacent flats and used broken pots to break windowpanes of L-18 to make it look like a real encounter.

After seeing the L-18 flat, the team said no one could have bought the story of someone escaping as there was only a single entrance, which the police had already covered. It was impossible for anyone to jump from the fourth floor flat. It demolishes the theory of police that two of the 'dreaded terrorists' had run away. More importantly, one of the 'terrorists', Zeeshan, surrendered to a television news channel within hours of the encounter. "Why will he do that?" the locals ask.

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