March 15, 2016 2:16:13 am
An inquiry committee in the Home Ministry has been tasked to probe how certain papers pertaining to the Ishrat Jahan encounter case went missing, sources said Monday.
The probe will be conducted by Additional Secretary in Home Ministry B K Prasad. “The probe will only be limited to how the papers went missing and who were responsible. It will not go into why a second affidavit was filed or changes made in it,” a senior Home Ministry official said.
Replying to a motion on the change in affidavit filed by the Home Ministry in the Ishrat encounter case in Gujarat High Court on September 29, 2009, Home Minister Rajnath Singh told Lok Sabha last week that documents related to the preparation of the ministry’s second affidavit in the case were missing and an internal inquiry has been ordered.
According to the minister, two letters written by the then home secretary (G K Pillai) to the then Attorney General (AG) G E Vahanvati are not traceable. The draft of the second affidavit that came from the AG, to which the then home minister P Chidambaram made changes, is also missing.
Pillai had stoked controversy last month when he said Chidambaram, in his capacity as home minister, had personally overseen controversial changes in the Centre’s affidavit in the Ishrat case in 2009 to drop any references to her Lashkar-e-Toiba links.
An affidavit filed by the Home Ministry in the Gujarat High Court in August 2009, that argued against a CBI probe in the case, had cited Intelligence Bureau inputs that Ishrat, Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Zeeshan Johar and Amjad Ali Rana were part of an LeT sleeper cell.
In the affidavit filed in September 2009, the MHA said the IB inputs were not conclusive proof that the persons killed in the encounter had terror links.
Home Ministry sources said, the first file noting pertaining to the Centre’s second affidavit was of then Joint Secretary (Internal Security) D Diptivilasa, who put up a note to then Home Secretary Pillai that a letter had to be sent to the Attorney General for filing an additional affidavit. Pillai signed the letter and send it back.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.