Ishrat Jahan - File Photo
A special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court on Wednesday discharged former Gujarat DGP PP Pandey in the Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case.
Pandey who was one of seven policemen and four IB officers accused in the case is the first to be discharged. The court has said that it will upload its full order on the discharge by this evening.
DGP Pandey was the head of the state crime branch when Jahan and three others were killed in 2004.
Pandey's name figured in the original CBI charge sheet in the case, filed on July 3, 2013. Twice before, the Gujarat high court has rejected his petitions to have the FIR against him quashed.
In his petition to the CBI court, Pandey had said that the case is based on “circumstantial evidence” and the “chain of events have not been established prima facie and there is no material on record to show what could be the motive of the Applicant/accused to be a part of the so-called conspiracy”.
He had also claimed the CBI has “concocted the evidence by fabricating the statements of witnesses to somehow implicate the Applicant/accused” for “political reasons” and that statements on his involvement are based “merely on suspicion”.
Pandey was arrested but released on bail and returned to the force in February 2015. In 2017, He resigned as the Gujarat Police chief after the Supreme Court said it would remove him if he did not quit.