CBI names Gujarat cops as accused in Ishrat Jahan killing

Ahmedabad, July 3 (IANS) Nine years after Ishrat Jahan was gunned down in an alleged shootout by Gujarat Police, the CBI Wednesday filed a charge sheet in a court here naming at least six policemen as accused.

While stating that Ishrat, who lived in Thane, was not a terrorist as alleged by Gujarat Police, the CBI charge sheet named policemen P.P. Pande, A. Choudhary, D.G. Vanzare, Tarun Barot, J.R. Parmar and N.K. Amin among the accused.

The probe agency accused the policemen, including Indian Police Service officers, of murder, abduction, conspiracy and destruction of evidence, among other offences.

The formal set of charges were filed by Assistant Commissioner of Police P. Rathod in a Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) special court.

Declaring that Ishrat was not a terrorist, the CBI said that three others killed in the same alleged shootout June 15, 2004 were suspected of terror links.

Pranesh Pillai alias Javed Shaikh, Amjad ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar, who were killed in the incident in addition to Ishrat, were allegedly planning terror attacks in Ahmedabad.

The CBI said Pillai was allegedly using Ishrat, a collegian in Mumbai, hailing from Mumbra town of Thane, as a shield to cover his activities.

Contrary to expectations, no politicians have been named in the charge sheet and the CBI plans to file a supplementary document (charge-sheet) within a month in the case.

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