The Bombay high court quashed an FIR against a businessman though a charge sheet had been filed in the case. Coming down heavily on the Vakola police for making a baseless case of impersonation, cheating and possessing an unlicensed weapon against Thane-based Nihal Tanna, the court set aside all charges against him.
Tanna, 36, in his petition before the court, alleged that on June 20, 2011, the special squad of former Mumbai police commissioner Arup Patnaik picked him up near his shop in Thane on the pretext of questioning him in the murder of senior journalist J Dey. Dey was shot dead by Chhota Rajan gang members on June 11, 2011.
Tanna was illegally detained for several hours and physically assaulted. The special squad officers took him to Vakola police station where he was arrested and charged with impersonating, cheating and illegally possessing a weapon.
The police, in its FIR, said that on the intervening night of June 20 and 21, Tanna was travelling in his car in Vakola and was stopped by a police team on bandobast duty. The police alleged that Tanna was impersonating an officer because he had a ‘Police’ board on his dashboard. The police claimed he had an unlicensed revolver and live cartridges.
The police even filed a charge sheet. “But the court was convinced that no case could be made out against Tanna. Normally, once a charge sheet is filed in a case, courts are reluctant to quash FIRs and insist on discharging the case,” Tanna’s advocate Manoj Mohite said.
Tanna, in his petition, said that on June 20, 2011 (days after Dey was gunned down), he was confronted by a police officer outside his shop in Kalwa, Thane. The officer identified himself as inspector Thakre, a cop from the special squad, and forced Tanna to sit in his (Tanna’s) car. Two officers, Vankoti and Peerzade, joined them.
While Tanna was asked to sit behind with Peerzade, Thakre drove the car with Vankoti sitting beside him towards Mumbai. They kept asking about his involvement in the J Dey murder, Tanna said in his petition.
“They forcibly took me to Vakola police station where they held me and even beat me,” Tanna said.
After sometime, deputy commissioner of police Ambadas Pote and senior inspector Rakesh Sharma questioned him. But when they found nothing substantial, Tanna was arrested by the Vakola police.
Framed by men in khaki
Thane-based businessman Nihal Tanna, filed a court petition, alleging that a special squad of former Mumbai police chief Arup Patnaik picked him up on the pretext of questioning him in the murder of journalist J Dey who was shot dead by Chhota Rajan gang members on June 11, 2011. Tanna said he was taken to Vakola police station where he was beaten up. Later, despite finding nothing substantial against him, Tanna was arrested.