The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a plea seeking an independent inquiry into the killing of gangster-turned-politician Atiq Ahmed and his brother Ashraf while they were in police custody.
Advocate Vishal Tiwari filed the plea which also sought an inquiry into the 183 encounters that have taken place in Uttar Pradesh since 2017.
The matter has been listed for April 24.
Gangster-turned-politician Atiq Ahmed and his brother Ashraf were shot dead at point-blank range by the three who posed as journalists in the middle of a media interaction on Saturday night. The incident occurred when police personnel were escorting them to a medical college in Prayagraj for a checkup.
Atiq killers were inspired by Lawrence Bishnoi’s interviews
Posing as journalists, the three killers were trying to get sound bites from the two gangsters. The men suddenly dropped their camera and attacked the gangster and his brother.
The incident occurred just two days after the gangster-turned-politician’s son Asad Ahmed was killed in an encounter by the UP cops in Jhansi.
Asad and his accomplice Ghulam were wanted in the Umesh Pal murder case of Prayagraj and were carrying a reward of Rs 5 lakh each.
Last Friday, Uttar Pradesh Police said that it had encountered 183 alleged criminals in the last six years and this included Asad and his accomplice.
The plea filed by Tiwari had sought the creation of an independent expert committee to probe the killings of Atiq and Ashraf.
“Issue guidelines/directions to safeguard the rule of law by constituting an Independent Expert Committee under the Chairmanship of former Supreme Court justice to inquire into the 183 encounters which had occurred since 2017 as stated by Uttar Pradesh Special Director General of Police (Law and Order) and also to inquire into the police custody murder of Atiq and Ashraf,” the plea stated.
Referring to the gangster’s killing, the plea stated that “such actions by police are a severe threat to democracy and rule of law and lead to police state”.
“In a democratic society the police cannot be allowed to become a mode of delivering final justice or to become a punishing authority. The power of punishment is only vested in the judiciary,” the plea added.
The plea said extra-judicial killings or fake police encounters have no place under the law. When the police turn “Dare Devils then the entire rule of law collapses and generates fear in the mind of people against police which is very dangerous for democracy and this also results into further crime,” the plea claimed.