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Sohrab encounter case: Man quizzed by CBI missing

March 25, 2010 21:15 IST

The Central Bureau of Investigation probe into the death of Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kauser Bi, who were allegedly killed in a fake encounter in Gujarat, took a new turn when a person who was quizzed by the agency's team went missing in Hyderabad.

Mohammed Faheemuddin, residing in Vanasthalipuram area in the outskirts of the city, went missing on Tuesday.

His wife, Sajida Shaheen lodged a complaint with the police that Faheem -- a village development office in Nalgonda district -- had gone to buy some medicines at around 10 pm on Tuesday but did not return home.

In her complaint, Sajida felt that he might have been taken into CBI custody. However, Deputy Superintendent of Police S Giri, who is heading the five-member CBI team, denied any arrest.

The CBI had questioned Faheem about his mother-in-law Saleema Bi, who had reportedly accompanied Sohrabuddin and Kauser Bi when they had come to Hyderabad on someone's invitation.

The CBI, as part of its investigations into the alleged encounter, is now trying to find out the person who had invited the couple to the city.

The CBI suspects that the same person had provided information to Gujarat police officials about Sohrabuddin's movements and his travel plans from Hyderabad to Sangli by bus.

According to the sources, Faheemuddin told the CBI that he was unaware of his mother-in-law's location, as they had no interaction for a long time.

The CBI is also probing the role of some top IPS officers of the state who reportedly helped the Gujarat police team with information on Sohrabuddin.

It may be recalled that senior Gujarat CID officer Geeta Johri, during her investigations in Hyderabad, had questioned several senior IPS officers.

Another IPS office from the Gujarat cadre, Radhakrishnan, who was then on deputation at the CRPF Group Centre in Hyderabad, was also questioned as he was suspected of providing logistical support to the Gujarat team headed by DIG DG Vanzara.

Sohrabuddin and Kauser Bi were taken off the Hyderabad-Sangli bus on the night of November 22, 2005 at Tadola village in Bidar district. The bus belonged to the Sangita Travels and its driver Misbahuddin was the eyewitness of the incident in which a Qualis vehicle stopped the bus and unidentified people forcibly took the couple away.

Misbahuddin is also among the people questioned by Geeta Johri in the past and now by the CBI team. Interestingly, the tickets for Sohrabuddin and Kauser Bi were booked in fake names and telephone numbers given at the time of the booking of the tickets also turned out to be fake.
Mohammad Siddique in Hyderabad