In a dramatic development in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case,Noor Mohammed Goghari,who has been named as a witness in the chargesheet filed by the CBI has denied giving any statement to the probe agency. In a written statement filed in Ahmedabad Sessions Court,Goghari has said that he had not given any statement to CBI and that the Central agency had been forcing him to give a statement in the case.
He is one of the accused in the 2004 Popular Builders firing case. The court had issued a bailable warrant against him after he failed to remain present before the trial court on a number of occasions.
In its chargesheet submitted before the Special CBI Court in July against suspended IPS officer Abhay Chudasama and others,the agency had stated that Sohrabuddin had fired at Popular Builders at the behest of former Gujarat Minister of State (Home) Amit Shah,and senior police officers Chudasama,D G Vanzara and Rajkumar Pandian.
They had allegedly ordered the firing as part of a larger conspiracy to file a criminal case against Sohrabuddin to justify his encounter killing later.
Goghari had appeared before the court on Tuesday and given an application to cancel the warrant issued against him. In his application,he stated that he had gone into hiding following the arrest of Chudasama. He said he apprehended that CBI might detain him and coerce him to give statement against his will,in the encounter case. He said that while luring him to help in the Popular Builders firing case,CBI wanted to record his statement. But he had reportedly sought time to think over the issue and did not give any statement to CBI.
As per the CBI chargesheet in the encounter case,Goghari is Prosecution Witness No 79,and has reportedly given statements against suspended IPS officers Vanzara,Pandian and Chudasama,among others.
Firing case adjourned till August 25
Proceedings in the Popular Builders firing case has been adjourned till August 25. The trial was expected to begin in the Sessions Court on Wednesday. But owing to the unavailability of one of the accused and co-owner of Popular Builders,Dashrath Patel,on medical grounds,the proceedings have been adjourned.