Bombay High Court Slams SIT Over Delayed Probe In 2018 Fake Encounter Of Joginder Rana

Bombay High Court Slams SIT Over Delayed Probe In 2018 Fake Encounter Of Joginder Rana

The court expressed disappointment over the probe after perusing some of the statements of the eyewitness.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Saturday, March 02, 2024, 08:20 PM IST
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Bombay High Court | File

The Bombay High Court rapped the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the alleged 2018  fake encounter of Joginder Rana, a wanted criminal. 

Bombay HC questions SIT

The court questioned the SIT over the incomplete investigation against the police officers, who were allegedly involved in the fake encounter, despite an assurance given last November that the probe will be over in 12 weeks. 

"We are not happy at all with the manner in which the case has been investigated. Please tell us what has been done, otherwise we will be constrained to transfer the investigation," a bench of Justices Revati Mohite-Dere and Manjusha Deshpande said. 

The court expressed disappointment over the probe after perusing some of the statements of the eyewitness. 

Petition filed by Rana’s brother

The court was hearing a petition filed by Rana’s brother Surendra alleging that he was killed in a fake encounter by police and sought a probe into his brother’s death by either the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or an SIT. He had filed the petition soon after Rana’s death in 2018. 

Surendra’s Advocate Datta Mane pointed out that the accused police officers have neither been arrested nor transferred in the case. He apprehension over the eyewitnesses giving their statements when the two policemen were roaming freely. 

The bench has asked public prosecutor Prajakta Shinde to provide details of the steps taken by the police when a murder case is registered. Mane told the court that in November 30, 2023, a senior investigator had said the investigation will be completed in 12 weeks. 

Expressing  that they were far from happy with the probe, the judges asked whether they would have to monitor every detail of the investigation. Prosecutor said she will personally speak to the Thane police commissioner and inform the bench on March 4. 

Surendra has claimed in the petition that constable Manoj Sakpal and head constable Mangesh Chavan, deployed at the local crime branch in Nalasopara, carried out the alleged fake encounter.

At the time, the prosecution told the HC that Rana was a hardened criminal. When he tried to assault the police with the knife, they were forced to fire 2 bullet rounds and he succumbed to his injuries. The HC, on October 30, 2018 directed the State CID to take over the investigation. As their was not progress, the Hc had directed the case to be transferred to the SIT. 

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