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SC dismisses Gujarat plea on probe into fake encounters in all states

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The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a plea by the Gujarat government to order probe into all fake encounters that had taken place in all states over the past 10 years.

The Gujarat government of Chief Minister Narendra Modi has itself been facing legal scrutiny over several alleged fake encounters that have taken place in the state. These include cases of Ishrat Jahan and Sohrabuddin Sheikh.

Ishrat Jahan, a 19-year-old college student, was gunned down on June 15, 2004 along with three men by a police and intelligence squad near Ahmedabad city in Gujarat. In its chargesheet, the CBI had refuted state government’s claim that Jahan and the three men were terrorists heading to assassinate Modi. The agency also claimed that the police officers abducted them four days earlier and shot them in cold blood on the early morning of June 15, 2004.

The petition by the Gujarat government came amidst data that Uttar Pradesh was the worst offender in terms of fake encounter killings between 2002 and 2013. A total of 1,788 such deaths were recorded across the country during the said period, and Uttar Pradesh topped the list with 743 fake encounter deaths.

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) data further showed that Assam was number two with 273 such deaths, followed by Andhra Pradesh (101) and Maharashtra (88).

Gujarat, on the other hand, was near the bottom of the list with just 12 fake encounter deaths since 2002. The state featured well below Jharkhand (55), Uttarakhand (53), Delhi (52), Chhattisgarh (46), Karnataka (39), Odisha (39), Manipur (38), Meghalaya (33) and even Tamil Nadu (31).

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