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Haren Pandya murder: Wife moves Gujarat HC for fresh probe

Earlier this month, Jagruti had said that her husband's killers were still roaming free and that she would seek appropriate legal recourse for justice.

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The suspense surrounding the investigation of the Haren Pandya murder case has deepened as Jagruti Pandya, wife of the slain BJP leader, has filed a petition in the Gujarat high court for further investigation of the case. Earlier this month, Jagruti had said that her husband's killers were still roaming free and that she would seek appropriate legal recourse for justice.

On Friday, Justice SR Brahmbhatt heard her petition and ordered that it be placed before Justice RH Shukla on September 13, as such petitions are heard by Justice Shukla.

Earlier senior counsel SV Raju, on behalf of Jagruti Pandya, had requested Justice Brahmbhatt to hear the petition as Justice Shukla was on leave.

The petition is a fall-out of the high court verdict last month that acquitted 12 people convicted in the case by the trial court. While delivering the verdict, the court had also lashed out at the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for poor investigation of the case.

In her petition, Jagruti has stated that the division bench of the high court had clearly said that the investigation was not carried out fairly and impartially, a fact that was apparent even otherwise.

"There are several other factors, apart from what has been observed by the bench, which necessitate a reinvestigation or further investigation," the petition says.

Jagruti has further submitted that she had come to know that RB Sreekumar, former chief of state intelligence bureau, was asked to find out who was the minister in the Narendra Modi cabinet who had gone to meet members of a private enquiry commission. The private commission was set up under the chairmanship of former Supreme Court judge, Justice Krishna Iyer.

The instruction to Sreekumar was given by PK Mishra, then principal secretary of the chief minister, Jagruti's petition states adding that Sreekumar was also given a mobile number and asked to keep it under watch.

Jagruti Pandya has also mentioned in her petition the statement by Azam Khan, a witness in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case. Khan had said that Sohrabuddin was saved from being implicated in the Haren Pandya murder case by a police official.

She said the CBI had not investigated an important witness, Kalimuddin alias Nayeemuddin, though he was wanted in the Haren Pandya case. The initial investigation of the case was carried out by the crime branch when DG Vanzara was posted there. IPS officer Abhay Chudasama was sent on deputation for one month to the CBI to assist the case.

Later, both these officers were prima facie found involved in concocting false cases and were arrested in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case.

Earlier, the high court bench which acquitted all the 12 people convicted in the Haren Pandya murder case by the trial court, had also questioned the CBI probe over injuries, bullets fired and the absence of blood stains in the car in which Haren's body was found. The bench had also noted that the call details of Haren Pandya's mobile were missing from the case papers. The court had also refused to accept the eyewitness account in the case.

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