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Ishrat Jahan case: Inquiry report says papers were ‘removed knowingly or unknowingly’

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New Delhi: The one-man inquiry panel probing the missing files related to Ishrat Jahan case has concluded that the papers were “removed knowingly or unknowingly or misplaced” in September, 2009, a period when Congress leader P Chidambaram was the Home Minister.

Only one paper out of the five documents related to the controversial alleged Ishrat fake encounter case that went missing from the Home Ministry was found, said Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry B K Prasad in his inquiry report submitted to Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi.

“It is evident that the documents were removed knowingly or unknowingly or misplaced,” the inquiry committee has concluded.

The inquiry panel, however, made no reference to Chidambaram or anyone in the then UPA government. Congress leader Chidambaram was the Home Minister then.

Based on the statements of 11 serving and retired officers, including the then Home Secretary G K Pillai, the 52 -page report said the documents went missing between September 18-28, 2009.

The second affidavit, which was different from the first one, and filed before Gujarat High Court on September 29, 2009, had said there was no conclusive evidence to suggest that Ishrat was an LeT operative.

The papers which went missing are office copy of the letter and enclosure sent by the then Home Secretary to the Attorney General on September 18, 2009, office copy of the letter sent by the them Home Secretary to the AG on September 23, 2009, draft further affidavit as vetted by the AG, draft further affidavit amended by the then Home Minister on September 24, 2009 and office copy if the further affidavit filed with the Gujarat High Court on September 29, 2009. The paper which was retrieved from a computer hard disk was the letter sent by the then Home Secretary to AG on September 18, 2009.

Ishrat, Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjadali Akbarali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were killed in the encounter with Gujarat Police on the outskirts of Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004. The Gujarat Police had then said those killed in the encounters were LeT terrorists and had landed in Gujarat to kill the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

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