NC worker death: Records statement

A ruling (NC) activist who levelled bribery allegations against party worker Sayeed Muhammad Yousuf, whose mysterious death Sep 30 kicked up a political storm, was presented before a local court for recording his statement.

Last Updated: Nov 01, 2011, 20:06 PM IST

Srinagar: A ruling National Conference (NC) activist who levelled bribery allegations against party worker Sayeed Muhammad Yousuf, whose mysterious death Sep 30 kicked up a political storm, was Tuesday presented before a local court for recording his statement as a prosecution witness in a criminal case registered against Yousuf.

Sleuths of the Jammu and Kashmir crime branch Tuesday presented Bhat before the north Kashmir Ganderbal court of the chief judicial magistrate. He was taken to the court by deputy superintendent of police (crime) Bashir Ahmad, the investigating officer of the case registered against Yousuf, the NC activist who allegedly died Sep 30 in police custody.

Highly placed police sources told IANS: "Muhammad Yusuf Bhat of Rapore, Ganderbal was today presented by crime branch investigators before the chief judicial magistrate (Ganderbal) for recording his statement under section 164A as a prosecution witness."

Bhat had alleged that Yousuf had taken Rs.85 lakh from him for getting the former a ministerial berth. Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had ordered Yousuf`s arrest by the crime branch of the state police on Sep 29.

The crime branch had lodged an FIR against Yousuf under sections 420 (cheating) and 606 (criminal breach of trust) of the criminal procedure code.

Yousuf and Bhat, along with another NC worker, had been summoned by Omar to his house for questioning over bribe allegations on Sep 29.

Yousuf had died during the night intervening Sep 29 and 30.

An inquest was ordered by the district magistrate Srinagar into the death as his relatives and political rivals of the chief minister alleged he had died because of torture.

Post-mortem report and forensic tests, however, confirmed the accused had died because of cardiac arrest and not because of any torture in custody.

Unsatisfied relatives moved the court of the special judge anti-corruption court seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the death.

The special judge Tuesday dismissed the plaint maintaining that the anti-corruption court had no jurisdiction to order a CBI probe.

The judge also dismissed the second part of the plaint by the relatives seeking registration of a criminal FIR into the death of Yousuf.

Professor Bhim Singh, president of the National Panthers` Party, has filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking a CBI probe into the death of Yousuf.

The apex court Monday issued notices to the union of India and the Jammu and Kashmir government in connection with the petition.

IANS