The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday submitted chargesheet before a special court against 10 accused in the double murder case of BJP leaders in Bharuch, claiming the killings were part of a larger conspiracy involving co-accused located in Pakistan and South Africa. As per the chargesheet submitted before the special NIA court of principal judge PB Desai, “The case relates to murder of two persons …as part of a larger conspiracy in which co-accused located in foreign countries too, were conspiring to kill and strike terror in the minds of people belonging to a particular section of society.”
“During investigation, role of co-accused located in Pakistan and South Africa has also emerged and investigation of the case is being continued to collect more evidence against the accused,” it said.
The central agency said chargesheet against two more arrested accused — Abdul Samad and Nasir Khan Pathan — will be filed later.
The chargesheet was filed against accused Saiyed Imran, Zuheb Ansari, Inayat Patel, Mohmad Yunus, Haider Ali, Nissarbhai Sheikh, Mohsin Khan Pathan, Mohmed Altaf Shaikh, Abid Patel and Abdul Salim Ghanchi.
Former BJP president of Bharuch and senior RSS member Shirish Bangali and general secretary of Bharatiya Janta Yuva Morcha Pragnesh Mistry were shot dead in the district by two unidentified gunmen on 2 November, 2015.
Public prosecutor Geeta Gorambe also submitted three applications before the court, seeking permission to keep identity of some witnesses secret, details of certain documents hidden, and NIA protection to the witnesses.
Gorambe told the court that NIA will itself provide protection to certain witnesses but wanted court permission for the same. The court granted permission for all three requests.
A total of 12 accused were arrested in connection with the case and were booked under relevant sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, IPC, Arms Act the Gujarat Police Act.
The special court had in December last year granted NIA more time for filing the chargesheet.
Initially, Bharuch police along with Gujarat Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) conducted the probe and had termed the murders as an ‘act of terror’.
Investigators said the contract for killing the two BJP leaders was allegedly given by absconding Javed Chikna, apparently to avenge riots in Bombay (Mumbai) during 1993 and in Gujarat during 2002.
One of the chargesheeted accused Abid Patel is brother of Javed, an accused in the 1993 Bombay (Mumbai) bomb blasts case.
During investigation it was also found out that Javed and others associated with Dawood Ibrahim gang instructed local module to kill BJP leaders to avenge 1993 Bombay (Mumbai) riots and 2002 riots, they said.
Based on the request of Gujarat Government, Home Ministry has handed over the probe to NIA in December last year.