Encounter case: Mumbai CBI court drops charges against another cop

A special CBI court in Mumbai today dropped charges against Gujarat Additional Director-General of Police Geeta Johari in connection with the Sohrabuddin Sheikh and Tulsiram Prajapati 'encounter' cases as the Maharashtra government had failed to give its mandatory sanction for her prosecution.

"Prosecution against Johari stands dropped for want of sanction", observed special CBI judge M B Gosavi.

The court has already discharged BJP president Amit Shah, Rajasthan home minister Gulabchand Kataria, Rajasthan-based businessman Vimal Patni, and former Gujarat police chief P C Pande from the case.

The Central Bureau of Investigation had booked Johari for delaying investigation in the Prajapati case and also for allegedly destroyed some case records.

"We had moved discharge application saying that mandatory sanction from the government was not obtained and hence she cannot be prosecuted," her lawyer Sachin Pawar said.

Sohrabuddin, a gangster who the Gujarat police claimed had links with Pakistan-based terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba, and his wife Kausarbi, were allegedly abducted by Gujarat's Anti-Terror Squad when they were on way from Hyderabad to Sangli in Maharashtra.

At the time when India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, Sohrabuddin was killed in November 2005; while his wife simply disappeared and was believed to have been done to death. Both were unarmed.

Tulsiram, an aide of the gangster and an eyewitness to the encounter, was allegedly killed by police at Chapri village in Banaskantha district in Gujarat in December 2006.

The Sohrabuddin killing case was transferred to Mumbai in September 2012 at the CBI's request for fair trial.

In 2013, the Supreme Court had clubbed Tulsiram Prajapati's encounter killing case with that of Sohrabuddin.