The Gujarat government on Tuesday granted former Indian Police Service officer DG Vanzara a post-retirement promotion. Vanzara, taking a shot at “anti-national forces” who he claimed had concocted fake encounter cases against him, tweeted the state government’s notification.
“Consequent to clean chit received from Judiciary in all Encounter Cases which were concocted by Anti-National Forces against me & Gujarat Police, I am given Post-Retirement Promotion of Inspector General of Police wef 29-09-2007 [with effect from September 29, 2007],” Vanzara tweeted.
Last year, a special court in Gujarat had dropped proceedings against former Gujarat Police officers DG Vanzara and NK Amin for their alleged role in the Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case. The court dropped the proceedings as the Central Bureau of Investigation did not get the Gujarat government’s sanction to prosecute the officers. The state government had refused to grant sanctions, saying the police officers had done their official duty.
Lawyer Vinod Gajjar, who represented Vanzara, said the court’s order establishes that the encounter was genuine.
Vanzara had retired as the deputy inspector general of police in 2014, after spending seven years in jail. Vanzara was heading the Gujarat Anti-Terrorism Squad when the alleged fake encounters of Ishrat Jahan and Sohrabuddin Sheikh took place.
The court had rejected Vanzara and Amin’s discharge pleas during a hearing in August 2018. The CBI had opposed the officers’ discharge pleas, saying it had sufficient evidence to establish that Vanzara was the mastermind of the entire operation and Amin was present at the encounter site.
The alleged fake encounter case
In June 2004, Jahan and three others were killed in an alleged encounter with security forces on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. The state police had claimed that the four had links with terrorist groups and were conspiring to kill Narendra Modi, who was Gujarat’s chief minister at the time. However, a special investigation team set up by the High Court had found the encounter to be fake. After this, the case was transferred to the Central Bureau of Investigation.
Vanzara had told the court he should be let go as the CBI chargesheet was “concocted and politically motivated” and there was “no prosecutable material” against him. Amin, in his plea, had accused the investigating agency of not following the proper legal procedure while making certain accused approvers in the case. He was a superintendent of police, working under Vanzara, at the time of the incident.