Ishrat Jahan case: Uproar in Parliament; SC rejects plea to quash case against Gujarat police

Headley's statement on Ishrat Jahan has created quite a controversy, with the government accusing the Congress led UPA of shielding a terrorist
Headley's statement on Ishrat Jahan has created quite a controversy, with the government accusing the Congress led UPA of shielding a terrorist

NEW DELHI (TIP): Replying to a Calling Attention in the Lok Sabha on alleged alteration of affidavit relating to Ishrat Jahan case, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said, March 9,” No politics should be done on the issue of terrorism. Whether it is Ishrat Jahan or any other case, there should not be flip-flop by any government. “A terrorist is a terrorist. Terror has no caste or religion.”  He said:” I am pained to say that previous government made flip flop decisions on the Ishrat Jahan encounter case and new dimensions were given to all facts.”

The minister added that the previous UPA government made an attempt to tone down the fact that Ishrat was a LeT operative. However, in the first affidavit by the UPA government, it was stated that Ishrat was a LeT operative. Terrorist David Coleman Headley, in his testimony, had also confirmed that Ishrat was a terrorist, the Minister said. In view of the statement made by 26/11 conspirator David Coleman Headley on Ishrat Jahan, the Supreme Court on March 11 rejected the plea seeking to quash the criminal case against the Gujarat policemen who were involved in the case.

In his deposition last month, Headley had claimed that Mumbra resident Ishrat Jahan was a suicide bomber for Pakistan-based terror outfit LeT.

“The operation was about shooting the police at some naka. One woman LeT named Ishrat Jahan was involved. Muzammil Bhatt was the head of our group before Sajid Mir,” he told the court via video conferencing.

In June 2004, Ishrat Jahan, Javed Sheikh, Zeeshan Johar and Amjad Ali Rana were shot dead by the Gujarat police on the outskirts of Ahmedabad.

The police had alleged that Ishrat and her associates were LeT operatives involved in a plot to assassinate Narendra Modi who was the chief minister of Gujarat.

After a long investigation, in 2009, an Ahmedabad Metropolitan court ruled that the encounter was staged.

Meanwhile, the Congress Party downplayed Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s criticism of the former UPA regime with regard to the Ishrat Jahan case and said that his so called ‘political statement’ holds no significance.

Former home secretary G.K. Pillai had earlier alleged that former home minister P. Chidambaram ‘bypassed him’ and rewrote an affidavit submitted to a court on Ishrat Jahan, the 19-year-old student killed in an encounter in 2004.

Referring to the change in the Home Ministry’s affidavit in the Ishrat Jahan case that did not refer to her as Lashkar-e-Taiba operative, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while intervening in the motion of thanks for the President’s address to Parliament told the Rajya Sabha, “In the process you unbarred the entire security apparatus of India because you wanted to fix a political leader. Someday an investigation will take place on how internal security was played with.

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