Prajapati encounter: Court refuses chargesheet copies to accused cops

A special CBI court on Monday rejected applications of several accused policemen seeking copies of chargesheet filed by the CBI in connection with the Tulsiram Prajapati fake encounter case. The court refused to give the copies citing a Supreme Court order that stayed the proceedings in the case.

Earlier in the day, 15 police officers lodged at Palanpur and Sabarmati central jails, including suspended IPS officers D G Vanzara, Rajkumar Pandian, Dinesh M N and Vipul Agrawal, were produced before the court. They were summoned after the CBI filed chargesheet on October 29.

Vanzara, Pandian, Dinesh M N and inspector Abdul Rehman sought the copies of the chargesheet on the ground that the stay on proceedings by the SC did not apply on them.

"I am entitled to get the copy of chargesheet which, in context of my case, is merely a supplementary chargesheet that was submitted to this court under the provisions of criminal procedure (CrPC) 173 (4) that is for further investigation and not under CrPC 173 (2) that is for re-investigation," Vanzara stated in his submission.

"Since the CBI investigation is in nature of further investigation, I am deemed to have been arrested. This also means that the cognizance in the case is also deemed to have been taken. The provisions of CrPC are clear that one person can't be arrested twice in the same case or offense. Also the court can take cognizance of only offense and not the offenders," he added.

Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate A Y Dave rejected the demand of all the applicants while stating that as per the SC order, giving copies of the chargesheet was also part of the proceedings. However, he said the applicants can challenge his order for revision.

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