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Officer whose 16 witnesses turned hostile deposes

Thursday, October 11, 2018
By A Staff Reporter

Sohrabuddin - Tulsiram killing case

Among these were crucial witnesses

A CBI officer who had recorded statements of crucial witnesses, almost all of whom had turned hostile, deposed before the CBI special court yesterday.

Officer Bhatender Sharma was part of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) formed to investigate the alleged fake encounter of Sohrabuddin and the killing of his wife Kauser Bi.

The SIT had been formed after the CBI took over the case upon the order of the apex court after a writ petition filed by Sohrabuddin's brother Rubabuddin.  The officer said to court that he had recorded statements of 20 witnesses concerning the alleged fake encounter of Sohrabuddin and killing of his wife Kauser Bi. During trial, however, 16 of the persons he had recorded statements of, had to be declared hostile by the prosecution as they did not stand by their earlier statements to the CBI.

One of the most crucial witnesses among them was Gurudayalsingh Choudhary, a driver at Anti-Terrorism Squad, Ahmedabad, for the vehicle of IPS officer Rajkumar Pandian, a discharged accused in the case. According to Choudhary's earlier statements to the agency, he had gone from Ahmedabad to Hyderabad along with the Gujarat police party that was later accused in the case for abduction and killing of Sohrabuddin and his wife Kauser Bi. He had been witness to the abduction of Sohrabuddin and Kauser Bi from a bus that was going from Hyderabad to Sangli.

Other witnesses of this officer who had been declared hostile during trial were Madhubhai Bandiyawala, the cousin of Premjibhai whose Qualis care was allegedly used by Rajkumar Pandian between November 18 and 23 of 2005, during which period the abduction took place.

Sohrabuddin was killed on November 26, 2005 and subsequently Kauser Bi was also killed. Another witness of this officer was Gurubantsingh Sardar, whose crane was allegedly used for pulling out a tempo which got stuck in the soil on the banks of the river where it had been taken to carry wooden logs for burning the dead body of Kauser Bi.

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