Arun Jaitley questions Congress: Who killed Sohrabudin investigation?
The comments came days after Congress party criticised the acquittal of 22 accused in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday slammed the Congress, accusing the party of "killing" the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) during the UPA regime in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case.
In a blog post, Jaitley asserted that the Congress, which has been raising concerns over institutional independence, needed serious introspection as to what they did to the investigating agency during the UPA rule from 2004 to 2014.
"This is irrefutable evidence of what the Congress did to our investigative agencies. Those who have recently shown a belated concern for institutional independence should seriously introspect as to what they did to the CBI when they were in power," Jaitley said.
The comments came days after Congress party criticised the acquittal of 22 accused in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case.
"No one killed them, they just died," Congress president Rahul Gandhi had tweeted on December 23, a day after the special CBI court exonerated the 22 accused.
The Finance Minister, in his post, hit back at the Congress party for raising doubts on the verdict.
"The special CBI judge, Mumbai, who deals with CBI cases, has acquitted all accused in Sohrabudin case. More relevant than the order of the acquittal is the observation of the Judge that in the investigation, from the very beginning, Investigating Agency did not investigate the case professionally in order to find out the truth but to divert it towards certain political persons," Jaitley wrote.
Continuing his tirade against the Congress president, Jaitley said, "The Congress President Rahul Gandhi, on the day of the judgement, raised the issue 'that nobody killed Sohrabudin'. It would have been more appropriate if he had asked the right question namely who killed Sohrabudin case investigation. If he had asked the right question, he would have got the right answer."
In 2005, Sohrabuddin and his wife Kausar Bi were killed in alleged fake encounters by a joint team of Gujarat and Rajasthan police.
"On September 27, 2013, as the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, I had written to then Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh a letter detailing the politicisation of the investigation in the Sohrabudin, Tulsi Prajapati, Ishrat Jahan, Rajinder Rathore and the Haren Pandya cases. Every word of what I have said in the letter over the next five years have proven to be true," Jaitley said in the post.
In 2010, the CBI took over the case from the CID. Special CBI public prosecutor BP Raju submitted that most of the evidence was procured by the CBI. He also said that the trial was hampered because of 92 witnesses turning hostile.
The CBI had filed a charge sheet in 2012, which had named BJP president Amit Shah as well as former Rajasthan home minister and BJP leader Gulab Chand Kataria as accused in the case.
During the hearing, special CBI judge SJ Sharma, while delivering the judgement, said that the government machinery and prosecution brought 210 witnesses in the case, but they turned hostile during the course of the case.
Sharma further said that although medical reports claimed that Sohrabuddin died of bullet injuries, evidence suggested that the present accused were not responsible for the crime.
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