New Delhi: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday constituted a high-level team headed by Additional Secretary (Home) B.K. Prasad to look into the issue of missing files in the alleged encounter of Ishrat Jahan.
The committee will look into how the draft of the second affidavit went missing and who drafted it.
The Home Minister had last week told the Lok Sabha that many documents related to the preparation of the Ministry of Home Affairs’ second affidavit in the Ishrat Jahan encounter case were missing and an internal inquiry had been ordered.
He also said the MHA is conducting an internal inquiry on missing documents from the Ishrat affidavit file.
He further stated that the two letters written by the then home secretary (G.K. Pillai) to the Attorney General are not traceable. The draft of the second affidavit that came from the Attorney General in which the then home minister P. Chidambaram made changes is also missing.
The Gujarat Police on June 15, 2004, shot dead three men and a woman – 19-year-old Ishrat Jahan –while they were allegedly on a Lashkar mission to assassinate then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi.
However, a probe conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and a High Court-appointed Special Investigation Team found it to be a fake encounter.
According to the Home Ministry officials, the first affidavit in the case was filed on the basis of inputs from Maharashtra and Gujarat Police besides the Intelligence Bureau where it was said that the 19-year-old girl was a Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) activist but it was ignored in the second affidavit.
The second affidavit, believed to have been drafted by Chidambaram, said that there was no conclusive evidence to prove that Ishrat was a terrorist.
Former union home secretary G. K. Pillai had claimed that as home minister Chidambaram had recalled the file a month after the original affidavit, which described Ishrat and her slain aides as LeT operatives, was filed in the court.