CBI chief to decide on framing charges against IB officers

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CBI Director Ranjit Sinha will decide whether to file a chargesheet against IB special director Rajinder Kumar and other IB officials for their alleged role in the 2004 Ishrat Jahan fake encounter. The supplementary chargesheet in the case is awaiting Sinha's nod. Sinha, who returned from Panama on Monday, is likely to go through the evidence in the next few days, before deciding on the accused to be named in the chargesheet.

Sinha's decision is crucial owing to difference of opinion between probe officers of the CBI over naming Kumar as an accused.

With special director K Saleem Ali, who was supervising the case, retiring on November 30, the decision was left to Sinha who may seek legal opinion.

The agency is also likely to provide details of the roles of four IB officials including Kumar, Rajeev Wankhede, M K Sinha, and T Mittal, who were posted at its Gujarat unit.

Sources said Amit Shah, former Gujarat minister and a close aide of Chief Minister Narendra Modi, may not be named in the chargesheet. Sinha can also raise questions on the findings and may ask for further probe on any issue mentioned in the final report. The supplementary chargesheet may not give antecedents of the victims — Ishrat Jahan, Javed Sheikh, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar — but could be mentioned in another supporting chargesheet.

The agency said a final decision on the issue of the antecedents of the victims could be taken if it gets a reply to a judicial request from Pakistan. Johar and Rana were alleged to be Pakistani terrorists who had come to eliminate BJP leaders, sources said, adding that the agency is looking to trace their background but has remained unsuccessful so far.

The agency may file one more chargesheet giving further details on the meetings involving Gujarat officers and ministers which took place purportedly to save the police officers named as accused. The Gujarat police had claimed in its FIR that Johar and Rana were Pakistani citizens who had come to India to eliminate VIPs.

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