Dera ex-manager wants Ranjit murder case shifted, CBI opposes

PANCHKULA: In a new twist in the Ranjit Singh murder case, former Dera Sacha Sauda manager Krishan Lal today moved an application for shifting the case out of the court of CBI Special Judge Jagdeep Singh as he had already pronounced conviction in two other dera cases — Ram Chander Chhatrapati murder and rape of two women followers.

Dera ex-manager wants Ranjit murder case shifted, CBI opposes

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. File photo

editorial@tribune.com

Amit Bathla
Tribune News Service
Panchkula, December 7

In a new twist in the Ranjit Singh murder case, former Dera Sacha Sauda manager Krishan Lal today moved an application for shifting the case out of the court of CBI Special Judge Jagdeep Singh as he had already pronounced conviction in two other dera cases — Ram Chander Chhatrapati murder and rape of two women followers. However, the CBI strongly opposed the move. The application has been moved at the stage of final arguments, the last stage before pronouncing the order.

Along with dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh and Krishan Lal, Jasbir, Indersen, Avtaar and Sabdil are accused in the case.

Krishan Lal submitted before the court today that in the Ranjit Singh murder case, the CBI has been relying on an anonymous letter which was also the basis of the rape case against the dera chief. He said the main witnesses were same in both the cases, their statements were also similar and the CBI court had convicted Ram Rahim and sent him to 20-year RI on August 28, 2017, in the rape case.

Krishan Lal said the same court had convicted him along with Ram Rahim in journalist Chhatrapati murder case where the judge believed the statement of former dera chief’s driver Khatta Singh who is a witness in the present case too. He further submitted that 14 defence witnesses were same in both Chhatrapati and Ranjit murder cases. “That propriety, justice and judicial discipline, and the principles of fair trial demand that this case be transferred to another court or sent by way of reference as the learned court has already formed an opinion in this case,” he said.

CBI counsel HPS Verma countered that the accused had filed the application to delay the trial and the CBI court itself has “no jurisdiction” to decide the matter.

Demanding the imposing of exemplary cost on Krishan Lal, Verma said there were different sets of evidence in rape and Chhatrapati cases. “Chhatrapati case was decided in January and since then, many hearings have taken place but the accused never raised any issue. Thus, the filing of the present application is only to delay the trial,” he said. The next date of hearing is December 10.

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