Mumbai, Dec 21: A Special CBI Court in Mumbai on Friday acquitted all the 22 accused in Sohrabuddin Sheikh case, due to lack of evidence.
Special CBI Judge SJ Sharma observed in his order that all the witnesses and proofs are not satisfactory to prove conspiracy and murder, the court also observed that circumstantial evidence is not substantial.
“Allegation that Tulsiram Prajapati was murdered through a conspiracy is not true”, the court asserted.
The Court further said that the government machinery and prosecution put in a lot of effort, 210 witnesses were brought but satisfactory evidence didn’t come and witnesses turned hostile. No fault of the prosecutor if witnesses don’t speak”.
‘I am helpless’, Judge SJ Sharma observed while referring to witnesses turning hostile and proof not being satisfactory against the 22 accused in the matter.
The 22 accused, including 21 lower police officials of Gujarat-Rajasthan police, who have been acquitted are: M.L. Parmar, Raman Singh, Narayansing Dhabi, Shyam Singh, Abdur Rehman, Himanshu Singh Rajawat, Balkrishna Choubey, Rajubhai Jeerawala, Ajay Parmar, Shantram Sharma, Yudhveer Singh, Kartar Singh, Narayan Singh Jat, Vijaykumar Rathod, C.P. Srinivasa Rao, Jethu Solanki, Kiran Singh Chauhan, Vinod Limbachia, Kanjibhai Kutchi, Karan Singh Sishodia, Ashish Pandya, and Naresh Chauhan.
The verdict in the case came over 12 years after the alleged ‘fake encounters’ of Sohrabuddin and his associate Prajapati, murder of Sohrabuddin’s wife, Kausar Bi.
Sohrabuddin, whom the Gujarat Police claimed was a terrorist, along with his wife was killed by the Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad in November 2005.
A total of 37 accused were named in the case out of which 16 — mostly politicians and IPS officers — were subsequently discharged by the Special CBI Court in Mumbai and another by the Bombay High Court.
Among those discharged initially were BJP Chief Amit Shah, who was the Gujarat Home Minister at the relevant time, the then Rajasthan Home Minister G.C. Kataria, high-profile ATS chief and DIG D.G. Vanzara, Superintendents of Police M.N. Dinesh and R.K. Pandian, among others.