Gujarat Fake Encounters: Political Undertones
Gujarat has always been the center of attention in the past as far as politics is concerned. However, the new controversies that are emerging out of this state are unprecedented and carry political as well as judicial connotations. The recent arrests of police personnel in Gujarat for staging “fake encounters” comes as another grim reminder of the weakness of our political and other government entities. These incidents are not isolated and have been in the headlines for more than four years. Recently the Gujarat high court has ordered a fresh probe into the killings of at least three people in such fake encounters.
Many people blame the Narendra Modi government for these killings and strongly believe that Mr.Modi played a pivotal role in them. The Gujarat police have always been suspected of connivance with political entities that have religious and anti Semitic features. These suspicions were further strengthened when the accused, a 19 year old student Ishrat Jahan, (and the other three suspects) who was killed in a fake encounter, was said to be kidnapped by the police according to the judicial probe by Judge SP Tamag. The police in Mumbai have also admitted that the deceased had no connection to any terrorist group and were not involved in terrorist activities. According to media sources, the encounters were carried out by the police because of the lure of rewards from the Chief Minister, Narendra Modi.
The police from other states have also been allegedly involved in such fake encounters and the Modi government is making it a point that other chief ministers were not suspended or removed. The Mumbai police and the Andhra Pradesh police have also been accused in the past for staging fake encounters. It seems that these encounters are a convenient way of getting promoted in the force and have raised questions and heated debates in the parliament.
The forensics tells a different story in the Gujarat case and is in contretemps with the FIR filed by the police. The ballistics and analysis of the crime scene and bodies have shown that the killings were staged and carried out in cold blood. In light of these events many people are demanding a CBI probe into such fake encounters that are carried out under the disguise of gunning down suspected terrorists. A report compiled by Inspector General of police Geeta Johri has strongly recommended a CBI probe and has implicated political involvement in the killings.
The Modi government is now taking a lot of heat from the center as well as from people and media. The reason being the paranoia of the Modi government that there is a plot to kill Narendra Modi for his alleged involvement in the Godhra Riots. Narendra Modi was depicted as a monster on many television media channels during and after the riots. They alleged that he deliberately let the police sit on their hands while the riots took place. However, support for Modi government remains strong in Gujarat and it will not be a surprise if he continues to be a prime contender for the post of Chief Minister in Gujarat in the future as well.