The Central Bureau of Investigation has given a clean chit to Nitesh Rane,son of Industries Minister Narayan Rane and head of NGO Swabhiman Sanghatana,in an alleged incident of firing on one of his NGO members in September 2010. The CBI on Monday filed a final report before the Metropolitan Magistrate Court that no case could be made out against Nitesh in the absense of any eyewitness to the alleged incident and lack of confidence on victim Shaikhs claim.
Shaikh had alleged that Nitesh had shot at him twice at the NGOs Khar office. However,the agency has concluded that the injury on Shaikhs cheek was not caused by a fire arm. The final report was filed on basis of the medical evidence and victims statement corroborated with that of Niteshs and others who worked at the NGO, a senior officer privy to the investigation said.
The Bombay High Court had,on March 24 last year,transferred the probe into the incident from Crime Branch to CBI after Shaikh moved a petition claiming that Rane,a Congress leader and a Cabinet minister,was interfering in the probe.
The High Court observed that there were inexplicable circumstances that created doubts about the manner of the probe and said it was necessary to provide credibility and instill confidence in the probe of the case,which involves son of a Cabinet minister and the brother of a MP.
The CBI said a possibility of scuffle could not be ruled out but the claim that Nitesh shot at Shaikh could not be ascertained.
If a bullet is shot at Shaikh and if his claim that it grazed past him is true,the nature of injury,empty shell and other ballistic details should have supported this claim. Evidence does not support the allegations, a CBI officer said.
Soon after the incident,the local police had booked Nitesh under IPC Sections 307 (attempt to murder),323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt),504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) and relevant sections of Arms Act. The CBI had begun its investigations on the lines adopted by the Crime Branch.
Shaikh says in his complaint that he had gone to Niteshs NGO office on September 23,2010 around 4 pm,when Nitesh was furious over some loss he suffered in business.
Shaikh had gone there with sweets in hand to tell them some good news. He claimed that Nitesh fired a bullet on him in a fit of rage,which hit a glass there. He also said a bullet pierced his right cheek.