September 9, 2009
encounters in Guj than in Naxal-hit states'
Retd DGP RB Sreekumar says the killings
in thestate were staged
Throwing open the floodgates of angst and frustration, retired
director general of police RB Sreekumar spoke his mind on the fake
encounters issue. Highlighting that Gujarat has witnessed more
encounters in five years than the Naxal-infested 120 districts of
the country or the terrorist-hit northern states, the veteran cop
emphatically stated that the government had no locus standi to
appeal or disregard the findings of Justice SP Tamang in the Ishrat
Jahan encounter. "Questioning Justice Tamang's report is contempt of
court and questioning the freedom of the judicial system," he said.
Sreekumar further said, "Jaynarayan Vyas' comment that the judge has
shown his unnecessary interest is insubordination, highly
objectionable and contempt of court. Even the chief minister or the
governor have no powers to comment on judicial magistrate's inquiry
process, only the sessions judge and the high court can comment on
it, he said. "The government is not the party in this case;
Magistrate Tamang has not given any opinion against the government,
then why is the government saying suo moto that it does not agree
with the report," he asked, adding why they (govt) should, when they
are not party in the case.
Sreekumar was additional DGP (Intelligence) from April 9, 2002 to
Sept 18, 2002. Talking about motive of such encounters he said,
"What was the motive of the encounters? Had Gujarat police followed
the procedures according the regulation, after the encounters?
Encounters started on September 24, 2002, after my transfer as addl
DGP and completed in April 2007, when Vanzara and other officers
were arrested. Some one should try to trace the Gangotri (the root)
of all these incidents. Gujarat government, through Gujarat police,
had adopted the encounters as a part of a policy and a political
strategy." Referring to a semi-official diary, which he prepared in
2002, the retired cop said, "I have an entry of May 2002 in my diary
that Subbarao, who was the then chief secretary, had also been given
six months extension and six years of special appointment in state
government. He had asked me to kill people in encounters and I had
told him that if I even agree with him, I will be convicted under
IPC 120 (B) for conspiracy for murder and I denied."
Sreekumar also alleged that the Gujarat police had not followed the
procedures mentioned in rule 217 of Gujarat Police Manual Volume-3,
which says what the police are supposed to do after the encounters.
If there is case of death in police custody, immediate inquiry
should be done by the District Magistrate. But in any of the
encounter cases, these procedures have not been followed."