New Delhi: In a big relief to former Gujarat Home Minister Amit Shah, the Supreme Court on Monday ruled that no separate trial against Shah was needed in Tulsiram Prajapati murder case.

It further said, “The trial in Prajapati murder case is to be conducted together with Soharabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case. Killings of Prajapati and Soharabuddin were part of same conspiracy and there can't be a separate trial.”

Shah, who is believed to be a close aide of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, has accused the central probe agency of acting with a "malafide design" to seek his police custody again by filing a separate chargesheet in the Prajapati case.

Shah had earlier told the Supreme Court that both killings were "inter-connected" and an "integral part of the conspiracy hatched as a part of the same transaction." The CBI, however, took a contrary stand in its chargesheet in the Prajapati case, filed in November.

The probe agency claimed that both case conspiracies were different.

Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kauser Bi were allegedly abducted by Gujarat's Anti-Terrorism Squad from Hyderabad and killed in a fake encounter near Gandhinagar in November 2005.
While Tulsiram Prajapati, a key witness to the encounter, was allegedly killed by police at Chapri village in Banaskantha district in December 2006.

According to CBI, Shah was the "kingpin" of the conspiracy to kill Sohrabuddin. Most of the other accused in the case are policemen, some of them IPS officers.
Shah was arrested in July 2010 but released on bail after three months. A close confidante of Narendra Modi, Shah is currently out on bail.


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