The CBI judge hearing the alleged fake encounter cases of gangsters from Gujarat was served with his transfer letter on Wednesday. Likely nominee for BJP's president post, Amit Shah is the prime suspect in the cases.
On 25 June, the special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) judge J T Utpat was transferred prior to the hearing, where he was supposed to pass the order on the exemption application filed by Shah's advocate Robin Mogera.
Mogera had filed a plea in the court on 20 June, seeking exemption from the court without citing any reason. Utpat had questioned the lawyer about Shah's absence.
"Every time you are giving this exemption application without assigning any reason," Zee News quoted the judge.
The hearing, however, has been adjourned until 2 July, which will be headed by new judge B H Loya.
Although Utpat had made no comments regarding his transfer, Bombay High Court Registrar General Shalini Phansalkar Joshi told The Indian Express that the transfer order has come in response to Utpat's request for it sometime between May end and early June.
"He had made a representation to the High Court for a transfer to Pune because of his daughter's education. We often get such requests from judicial officers who seek transfers because of personal or family reasons," IE quoted her.
The prime accused in the alleged case Shah and 18 others, including police officers were chargesheeted by CBI in September 2013. The case, which was being heard in Gujarat, was transferred to Mumbai in 2014. The CBI had served summonses to all of them on May 9.
According to the news reports, Gujarat's Anti-Terrorism Squad abducted gangster Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kauser Bi, who were later killed in an alleged fake encounter near Gandhinagar in November 2005. Sheikh was suspected to have links with terror group Lashkar-e-Toiba.
The key eye witness to the encounter, Tulsiram Prajapati too was killed by police in December 2006 at Chapri village in Gujarat.
Shah, who was the Minister of State for Home at the time of the encounter, has been alleged to be one of the conspirators of both the murders.