Satypal Singh urges court to relieve him from Ishrat probe, court seeks centre’s opinion

Satypal Singh urges court to relieve him from Ishrat probe, court seeks centre’s opinion
Ahmedabad, 24 June, 2011





Chairman of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the Ishrat Jahan encounter killing case, Maharashtra IPS Satyapal Singh who had taken charge as chairman of SIT on June 18, today gave a letter to the bench of JusticendJayant Patel and Justice Abhilasha Kumari and requested the Gujarat high court that he be relieved from duty citing following reasons:

-Difference of opinion between the other two members of the SIT — Mohan Jha and Satish Verma.

-Inability to clearly comprehend Gujarati in which most of the statements of witnesses and police officers are recorded.

To this Justice Patel reacted this way:

-The Supreme Court-appointed SIT to look into some cases of the 2002 Godhra riots case was headed by R K Raghvan with AK Malhotra as member. They do not know Gujarati but they haven’t raised such a point. Even CBI joint director P Kandaswamy heading the probe into Soharabudin Sheikh fake encounter killing case don’t know Gujarati.

-This creates an impression that the probe in the case is progressing in a “soft-peddling manner” (tardy pace). If the officer has no zeal to work, then he needs to be relieved.

The high court criticized Singh for leaking the content of his application to the media, and asked the Union Government to file a reply on Singh’s letter if they would like to relieve him or not within a week. The court further said that if the Centre decides to relieve Singh, it should suggest names of other officers who could take up the chairmanship of the SIT. Further hearing in the matter has been kept on July 16.


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