Four Gujarat cops held for negligence

October 9th, 2011 - 9:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Udaipur (Rajasthan), Oct 9 (IANS) Four Gujarat policemen were arrested here Sunday for letting a witness to Sohrabuddin Sheikh’s killing escape, an official said.

Sub-inspector M.S. Gohil, Head Constable L. Ambalal and constables Ranchhod Jinabhai and Vijay Baburao were charged with criminal negligence for allowing Sylvester Daniel Christian to escape, police told IANS.

The policemen had come here from Vadodara for a court hearing Friday. The Udaipur police claimed the policemen illegally took Sylvester to his house in Bhupalpura area of the town, some 400 km from Jaipur.

Sylvester was arrested almost 26 hours later. The police seized a pistol and four cartridges from him when he was roaming near the house of an aunt.

Sylvester told police that he escaped to Ajmer and got hold of a gun. But police are sceptical about his claims.

“He will be produced in a court. His interrogation is on,” an officer said.

Sylvester is considered a vital witness by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the probe into the alleged fake shootout of Sohrabuddin and his aide Tulsiram Prajapati.

While the team which brought Sylvester to Udaipur claimed he escaped on the pretext of relieving himself when the guards were having tea on the highway, police here suspect the team illegally brought him to the spot from where he fled.

The policemen from Gujarat claimed he escaped around 8 p.m. Friday but they informed the local police five hours later.

“Two (Rajasthan) policemen spotted him roaming near his aunt’s house in New Bhupalpura around 10.30 p.m.,” said the officer, adding that he tried to flee again but was overpowered.

“The negligence of Gujarat Police was definitely there but there is a possibility they were in connivance with the criminal. This is also being probed,” the officer said.

A team of Gujarat Police Crime Branch is camping in Udaipur.

The Gujarat Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has been accused of killing Sohrabuddin in a staged shootout Nov 26, 2005 in Ahmedabad. Sylvester is considered a key witness to the alleged killing.

Sohrabuddin’s wife Kauserbi went missing two days later. Prajapati was killed in an alleged staged shootout Dec 28, 2006 — almost a year after Sheikh’s killing.

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