The division bench of Justices Jayant Patel and Abhilasha Kumari observed that as the CBI had filed a chargesheet before the special CBI court, the High Court's monitoring ended. It was the High Court which had ordered the probe by CBI after the questions were raised about genuineness of the encounter.

As the magistrate's court was conducting the proceedings now, the law would take its own course, the bench said.

CBI lawyer Ejaz Khan told the court that investigation against some officials was still underway, and a supplementary chargesheet may be filed. Mukul Sinha, lawyer for Gopinath Pillay, Javed Sheikh's father and one of the petitioners, however stated that the CBI chargesheet was an unfinished job, so the High Court should continue the monitoring of probe a little longer.

The CBI chargesheet, filed on July 3, said that the encounter was a joint operation carried out by Gujarat Police and Intelligence Bureau (IB).

Nineteen-year-old Mumbai-based girl Ishrat Jahan, Javed Shaikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were gunned down in an encounter by Gujarat police on June 15, 2004 on the outskirts of the city. The police had then claimed that the four were on a mission to assassinate Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

(Agencies)

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