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Shah Threatening Witnesses From Inside Jail, Says CBI

Former Gujarat minister Amit Shah, arrested in connection with the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case, is threatening witnesses from inside jail, Central Bureau of Investigation counsel K T S Tulsi informed the high court on
PTI October 27, 2010 10:07 IST
PTI
Former Gujarat minister Amit Shah, arrested in connection with the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case, is threatening witnesses from inside jail, Central Bureau of Investigation counsel K T S Tulsi informed the high court on Tuesday.

Opposing Shah's bail plea in the court of Justice R H Shukla, Tulsi said the former minister of state for home was cocking a snook at the law as the entire state machinery was at his beck and call.

"Shah is dangerous even inside the jail as being a (former) minister of state for home, he thinks he has become so powerful that he can neutralise the Supreme Court," Tulsi contended.

"If bail is granted to Shah there will be no hope of justice for the victims. Shah does not deserve bail," he said. Further hearing of Shah's bail will continue tomorrow. Enumerating the reasons for not granting bail to Shah, Tulsi submitted that the former minister was part of the conspiracy to kill Sohrabuddin, his wife Kausar Bi and witness Tulsiram Prajapati from the very beginning.

Shah was head of the extortion syndicate, consisting of Sohrabuddin as one of the collaborators, with several police officers as its members, Tulsi said. According to him, CBI has evidence to prove that Rajasthan  Police was aware of activities of Sohrabuddin, prior to the murder of gangster Hamid Lala, who used to collect protection money from the marble lobby in Rajasthan.

Tulsi said after Lala's murder, Sohrabuddin refused to part with extortion money with other members of the syndicate. He also read out portions from statements of some of the key witnesses in the case to prove his point that Shah and other accused used to threaten witnesses and tamper with evidence.

Tulsi also cited various Supreme Court judgements to assert his point that Shah does not deserve bail. Shah had approached the high court after his bail plea was rejected by a special CBI court. During hearing on the bail plea last week, Shah's senior counsel Ram Jethmalani had said that the CBI court's order of not granting bail lacks judicial balance.

Jethmalani had argued that Sohrabuddin was an extortionist and a racketeer and the entire exercise to arrest Shah was politically motivated to tarnish his reputation. Shah, who was arrested on July 25 by CBI, has beendescribed by the agency as the kingpin of the conspiracy that led to the killing of Sohrabuddin, Kausar bi and close aide Tulsiram and faces charges of murder, kidnapping and extortion. PTI