The Gujarat High Court today rejected the bail application of suspended IPS officer Abhay Chudasama, one of the key accused in the Sohrabuddin Shaikh fake encounter case of 2005.

“Considering the fact that the applicant is a senior police officer in Gujarat, the likelihood of his tampering with evidence and intimidating witnesses, if released on bail, cannot be ruled out,” said Justice Abhilasha Kumari while pronouncing the order reserved on September 7, 2012.

“Considering the totality of facts and circumstances of the case and material on record, there exists a prima facie case against the applicant (Mr. Chudasama), as is clearly borne out from the material on record,” it was observed.

“This is not a fit case to exercise the discretionary powers under Article 439 of the Constitution,” she added.

The court also clarified that, “The trial court shall decide the case in accordance with the law, without being influenced by any observations made in this judgment, as the court has examined the matter only from the perspective of grant of bail, without entering into the merits of the case.”

Earlier, just before the pronouncement of the order, CBI counsel Yogesh Ravani informed the court about Supreme Court order on Thursday, directing transfer of the trial of this case out of Gujarat.

However, Justice Kumari said she will go ahead with the pronouncement.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court had rejected the CBI’s plea to cancel the bail granted to former Gujarat minister Amit Shah in the Sohrabuddin Shaikh encounter case, but agreed to transfer the trial from Gujarat to Mumbai.