Sohrabuddin encounter: Judge recuses from case

A Gujarat HC judge recused himself from hearing the bail plea of suspended IPS officer Abhay Chudasamain the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case.

Ahmedabad: A Gujarat High Court judge on Friday
recused himself from hearing the bail plea of suspended IPS
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 ZK 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 CBI 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 DCP 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 Amit Shah, alleged to be the
`kingpin` 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 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 charge sheet 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 Sheikh was killed in a
alleged police encounter on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. 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 an alleged fake
police encounter in December 2006.

The CBI was told to investigate all the three killings by
the Supreme Court.


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