Mumbai: Three prosecution witnesses in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh and Tulsiram Prajapati alleged fake encounter cases turned hostile on Wednesday, taking the number of such witnesses in the case to 77.
Four 'panch witnesses' (those present during police procedures) from Gujarat deposed before CBI judge SJ Sharma in Mumbai and three of them were declared hostile.
According to one of the witnesses Jitendra Mehta's earlier statement to the CBI, he had been shown the spot where Prajapati was killed in the alleged fake encounter at Chapri, close to Gujarat-Rajasthan border, on 28 December, 2006. He had signed a statement to this effect.
However, in the court Mehta denied visiting the spot and said he had signed the statement at the local police station. The prosecution then declared him hostile.
Jaspal Purohit and Jayanatilal Joshi had said in their statements that they were shown Prajapati's body at a hospital at Ambaji, and also his blood-stained clothes.
They then signed the panchnama (crime scene inspection report).
However, Joshi told the special CBI court in Mumbai on Wednesday that he never went to the hospital, and police took his signature on the panchnama at his shop.
Purohit too denied visiting the hospital and said he had signed the paper at Ambaji police station as asked by officials.
The CBI lawyer declared both of them hostile.
The central probe agency has so far examined 129 witnesses, of which 77 have turned hostile.
Sheikh and his wife Kausar Bi were allegedly abducted by the Gujarat police's Anti-Terrorism Squad from Hyderabad on their way to Sangli in Maharashtra in November 2005. According to the prosecution, Sheikh was allegedly killed in a fake encounter. Kausar Bi was also allegedly killed later.
Tulsi Prajapati, an aide of Sheikh and who was said to be a witness to the encounter, was allegedly killed by police at Chapri village in Gujarat's Banaskantha district in December 2006
The fake encounter case was transferred to Mumbai in September 2012 on the request of the CBI for ensuring a fair trial.
In 2013, the Supreme Court clubbed the Sheikh and Prajapati encounter cases.
Updated Date: Jul 05, 2018 08:08:34 IST