Ishrat Jahan case: SC refuses to entertain PIL for dropping action against Gujarat cops

New Delhi: The Supreme Court today refused to entertain a PIL seeking quashing of criminal prosecution, suspension and other action taken against Gujarat cops in the 2004 alleged fake encounter killing of Ishrat Jahan in view of recent testimony of jailed LeT operative David Headley.

"What is the purpose of Article 32. You cannot file such a case under it. If you wish, you can go to the high court under Article 226 of the Constitution," a bench comprising Justices P C Ghose and Amitava Roy said minutes after lawyer M L Sharma started arguments in the case.

However, the bench clarified that it was not dismissing the petition on merits when Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta sought a clarification on this issue.

Ishrat Jahan

"Any person having locus can approach the appropriate authority," the bench said paving way for the affected Gujarat policemen including then DIG D G Vanzara to move the court for their exoneration in the politically sensitive case.

The plea seeking quashing of action taken against Gujarat cops refers to the statement of Headley,the Pakistani-American terrorist, recorded before a Mumbai court that Jahan was a Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative.

Gujarat Police personnel, including ex-cop Vanzara, are facing trial in a Mumbai court for their alleged role in the encounter.

The plea, which cited the recent statements recorded by Headley, who allegedly conspired with LeT in plotting the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, said the facts are now undisputed that all four persons killed by Gujarat Police, including Ishrat Jahan, were terrorists.

"The judicial proceeding and statement of David Headley, who conspired with LeT in plotting the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, stated via video conference and recorded in the special court at Mumbai that four persons, including Ishrat Jahan who were killed in June 2004 by Gujarat Police, were part of LeT terrorist organisation belonging to Pakistan and they were assigned to kill then Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi," it said.

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