[dropcap]A[/dropcap] three-judge bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph said that the report dated January 26, 2018 submitted by Justice H S Bedi (Retd.) shall not be furnished to petitioners until further order in the Gujarat fake encounters case.
The Special Task Force, under the supervision of Justice H S Bedi (Retd.) to probed into the alleged fake encounter killings in Gujarat between 2002 and 2006 when the current Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat. The Special Task Force had investigated 24 such encounters. Justice Bedi was appointed as the chairperson of the committee on March 2, 2012 while the probe had already begun. Justice H S Bedi submitted the report on January 26, 2018.
Meanwhile, 60 witnesses in the case have turned hostile. Dinesh Gurjar, the 96th witness in the Court and also a prison cell mate of Tulsiram Prajapati, said that on December 25, 2006, Prajapati was taken by the police from Udaipur to Ahmedabad for his case hearing. Two days later they were informed that he escaped from police custody and was encountered a day later. He also said that Prajapati feared facing encounter following the encounters of Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kausar Bi in 2005.
60 witnesses in the case have turned hostile. Dinesh Gurjar, the 96th witness in the Court and also a prison cell mate of Tulsiram Prajapati, said that on December 25, 2006, Prajapati was taken by the police from Udaipur to Ahmedabad for his case hearing. Two days later they were informed that he escaped from police custody and was encountered a day later
Also, Rizwana Khan, wife of Azam Khan, a crucial witness in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh murder case, filed a petition before the Rajasthan High Court asking not to move him from Udaipur Jail to Ajmer Jail alleging threat to his life.
On the request of Solicitor General Tushar Mehta’s request, the Supreme Court, on December 3, 2018, allowed the Gujarat Government a period of one week to file its reply to the final report submitted by the court appointed monitoring committee of the investigation.
On December 12, 2018, the Supreme Court asked Justice Bedi (Retd.) as to whether he had shared the reports submitted to the Court with other members of the monitoring committee. The Court also directed that the report shall not be shared with the petitioners until further order. The Gujarat Government contended that the report was unilateral. The case has been adjourned and the hearing will resume after the winter vacations.