Mosque firing cop booked

Just a day before a sessions court in Mumbai acquitted Farooq Mapkar of all the charges levelled against him for rioting at Hari Masjid on January 10,1993...

Written by Sukanya Shetty | Mumbai | Published: February 20, 2009 2:29 am

Just a day before a sessions court in Mumbai acquitted Farooq Mapkar of all the charges levelled against him for rioting at Hari Masjid on January 10,1993,the CBI registered a first information report (FIR) against the then assistant police inspector,Nikhil Kapse,accused of opening fire on the men gathered at the masjid,offering namaz. The complaint was registered after the Bombay High court directed the CBI to investigate the case.

“An FIR was registered on February 16 against Nikhil Kapse under Sections 302,307 and 324 of the IPC for murder,attempt to murder and grievous hurt,” said Harsh Bhal,Additional Director-General (Media),CBI.

On January 10,1993,as Mumbai burnt,Hari Masjid was among the early spots to witness tension. A group of five to six policemen led by Kapse allegedly entered the masjid and fired at those offering prayers. Mapkar,who was offering namaz,was shot in his abdomen when he tried to escape. Six other men were shot along with Farooq and then dragged to the R A K Marg police station. Six people were killed in the firing.

Kapse,who is now posted at Vakola police station as a senior police inspector,refused to comment on Mapkar’s acquittal and claimed to have not been informed of any complaint against him.

According to the affidavit filed by Mapkar before the High Court,it was Kapse who had shot Mapkar at point blank range and then dragged him to the police station,where he spent over a week with a bullet in his abdomen.

The Justice Srikrishna Commission,which was set up to inquire into the riot cases,had indicted Kapse’s team for opening fire without any provocation,but a departmental inquiry later found that the police were not at fault. Kapse has not been taken into custody even after he is booked under non-bailable sections. “It is a process and we will eventually seek his custody,” Bhal said.

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