Congress, CPI-M, AAP seek judicial probe into SIMI men’s killing
The Congress, CPI-M and the AAP on Monday demanded a judicial probe into the killing of eight alleged SIMI activists in a gunfight with police, after they reportedly escaped from Bhopal Central Jail.
“The facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged jail break raise several questions. The fact that all the eight alleged escapees were subsequently encountered raises the pertinent question as to whether they were killed in a cross-fire or they were also armed, in the first place,” Congress Spokesperson Manish Tewari told IANS.
Tewari also pointed to a video said to be of the alleged gunfight and widely shared on social media and telecast by news channels.
In the video, a policeman is seen shooting at one of the SIMI terror suspects. While another policeman is seen pulling out a knife from a second SIMI suspect’s body, the remaining appear to be dead.
“The purported video shows that perhaps the encounter is not what the police is making out to be. It appears to be a fake encounter. Therefore, this entire matter should be probed by a sitting Supreme Court judge, independent of both the central and the state government, for the truth to emerge,” added Tewari.
Congress veteran Digvijaya Singh hinted at a possible conspiracy behind the entire incident.
“It is a serious issue. First SIMI activists fled the Khandwa Jail (2013). Now they have fled from Bhopal jail. Was it really a jail break or were they made to escape in pursuance of a plan,” asked Singh demanding an independent probe into the alleged jail break as well their subsequent killing.
Questioning the veracity of the government’s claim, Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) politburo member Brinda Karat called for a probe by a high court judge.
“The government’s version is highly dubious and suspicious and full of self-contradictory statements. Therefore, to get to the truth, it is essential to have an independent probe under a high court judge,” she said.
“Nobody could believe what seems to be an entirely manufactured version by the government. These were undertrial prisoners and to call them SIMI terrorists and killing them like this is to subvert the law of the land,” added Karat.
“This is very serious. We demand a Supreme Court-monitored probe,” tweeted Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Convenor Arvind Kejriwal.
The eight members of the banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), who reportedly escaped from the Bhopal Central Jail, were killed in a gunfight on the outskirts of the city.