File noting exposed UPA attempt to frame Amit Shah in Sohrabuddin Sheikh case: Arun Jaitley
TNN | Dec 31, 2014, 03.43 AM IST
NEW DELHI: BJP on Tuesday celebrated the order of a Mumbai special court discharging Amit Shah in the case concerning his alleged complicity in "encounter" of Sohrabuddin Sheikh and Tulsi Prajapati, as vindication of their stand that the CBI’s chargesheet against the party chief was part of the conspiracy to implicate Prime Minister Narendra Modi while demanding an apology from Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.
Recalling that he "among the few" who maintained for 3 years that CBI’s case against Shah was a frame-up and was based on "no evidence", finance minister Arun Jaitley said charges were filed against Amit Shah at the behest of the previous regime, emphasizing that one vital noting on CBI file gave the game away. The noting had clearly said that the framing Shah was essential for implicating Modi, then the CM of Gujarat. He also said that while CBI’s own legal department had opposed the arrest, it was overruled by Ashwani Kumar.
"Shockingly, when the legal department of the CBI opined that there was no case against Shri Amit Shah, the same was responded to by the supervisory officer of CBI, putting up a "Note" by observing that the arrest of Amit Shah would enable the CBI to get some more witnesses particularly the police officers since they would then feel intimidated. He also opined that arresting Amit Shah was necessary since it was necessary to reach the eventual target of investigation of Narendra Modi. This note was approved by the Director, CBI, Shri Ashwani Kumar," Jaitley wrote on his Facebook.
Jaitley’s cabinet colleague, telecom minister Ravishankar Prasad, also applauded the special court for nailing the political conspiracy against Shah. "Justice has prevailed," said Prasad, claiming that the case against Shah was based on hearsay and marked ‘vendetta politics’.
BJP demanded an apology from Congress chief, with the party secretary Shrikant Sharma saying that the case against Shah was an "odious political crime".
The finance minister, who praised the judiciary for its independence and criticized the CBI for allowing itself to be misused, elaborated on his "frame-up" charge by emphasizing that Shah, then the minister of state for home in Gujarat, was sought to be falsely implicated in the case despite the fact that encounter of Sohrabuddin, a notorious gunrunner who was wanted by police in Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, was directed by Intelligence Bureau(IB) which works under the Centre. He said in such cases it is the IB which develops intelligence and tracks the target. Jaitley, who protested to former PM Manmohan Singh against Shah’s arrest, said police of states were brought into the picture only when the IB concluded that it was possible to arrest Sohrabuddin who was charged under TADA after Madhya Pradesh police recovered 40 AK- 56 rifles and hundreds of cartridges from his premises in Ujjain district.
Significantly, Jaitley also dwelt on the roles of law officers of UPA after Sohrabuddin’s brother approached the Supreme Court to demand a probe into the encounter. The finance minister said the then additional solicitor general "in a pre-conceived and planned move" appeared in the case on the very first day to volunteer to take instructions for the Centre. Gopal Subramaniam went on to "designate himself" as the amicus curiae in the case even when court had not appointed him. The then Attorney General made it a point to attend each hearing even when case did not concern the Centre in a formal way.
Jaitley further said even though the SC after hearing amicus curiae Subramaniam handed over the investigation to CBI on the ground that the case had inter-state ramifications there. CBI never probed the angle concerning Andhra Pradesh which was then ruled by Congress.
The finance minister also said CBI’s case against Shah was built on the fake testimony of two known land grabbers –Ramanbhai Patel and Dashrathbhai Patel– with criminal antecedents who were later felicitated at a function presided over by Congress leader Shankersinh Vaghela. Jaitley said the two witnesses against Shah had alleged that they were asked to pay Rs 75 lakh to the BJP chief in order to secure their release from preventive detention, whereas the fact was that the conduit through whom Shah allegedly collected money in three installments was not present in India on any of the three dates mentioned by them.
When the Gujarat HC granted Shah bail saying that there was no evidence against him, CBI challenged the order in SC which asked the BJP chief to stay out of Gujarat as a condition for bail.
Jaitley said Shah was made an accused in the case concerning the "encounter" of Tulsidas Prajapati merely because he was in telephonic contact with one of the accused police officers. Jaitley said Shah as home minister was required to be in touch with the police officer R K Pandian and yet the CBI not just arrested him but tried to drag the case despite the SC order to wrap it up in six months from November 21. CBI delayed filing the chargesheet until September 2012 so that Shah could be arrested before the assembly elections.
Also, while CBI initially told the SC that Prajapati case was an extension of one arising from the "encounter" of Sohrabuddin, it changed its stand to file a separate chargesheet merely to keep Shah in jail- a move which was thwarted by SC.
Jaitley also said CBI had also framed another senior BJP leader, Gulab Chand Kataria, former home minister of Rajasthan, in the Prajapati case. He said CBI’s case was exposed when Kataria produced evidence to show that he and his wife were not present in Rajasthan on the day when he was accused of meeting Gujarat "encounter" cop D G Vanzara at a Udaipur guesthouse to plot Prajapati’s "encounter".
परोपकाराय फलन्ति वृक्षा: परोपकाराय वहन्ति नद्यः।
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