Special Correspondent

The incident took place in Rajasthan during Vasundhara Raje regime

The killing had evoked considerable public resentment, especially among the Jat community

Wife of the deceased had approached the court for registration of an FIR

JAIPUR: The Rajasthan Government has referred the much talked about Dara Singh encounter killing case to the Central Bureau of Investigation for a “fair and impartial investigation”.

The killing, which took place during the time of the previous Bharatiya Janata Party Government here in October 2006, had evoked considerable public resentment, especially among the members of the Jat community.

The Government decision to hand over the case to the CBI is in consonance with the demand made by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot when he was in the Opposition to get the incident probed along with cases of telephone tapping and spying on MLAs during the Vasundhara Raje regime. An inquiry by a member of the Rajasthan Revenue Board is pending on the incident. Dara Singh alias Daria Jat, a resident of Mundital in Churu district’s Rajgarh tehsil, was killed in an alleged encounter with the police near Jaipur on October 23, 2006. As per the case registered at the Mansarovar police station in the State capital, the police had intercepted a bus on its way to Ajmer on the outskirts of Jaipur while in hot pursuit of the Dara Singh gang. The case (396/06) registered against him had Sections 307, 332, 353 of the Indian Penal Code and 3/25 of the Arms Act, besides Section 3 of the PDP Act, in it. The police had opened fire at the members of the gang who were fleeing once the bus was stopped near Rajendra Nagar. One of the gang members purportedly fired at the police while trying to escape. Once the police returned the fire, Dara Singh was hit. A 315-bore rifle and a pistol were allegedly recovered from him. Dara Singh’s body could be cremated in his native village only on the fifth day after his death because of widespread protests in the area. .

The protests were led by Rajaram Meel, president of the Jat Mahasabha, among others, who alleged police excesses in handling the case. Soon after, Sushila Devi, wife of the deceased, approached the court of the Additional District Magistrate to file a report. The report was sent to the Mansarovar police station on April 2, 2007, for registration of an FIR.

Sushila Devi had also approached the Rajasthan High Court in May 2007 seeking action against the authorities on a charge of contempt of court for not initiating proceedings on the earlier court directive.

Sushila Devi had approached the Supreme Court on April 4, last year with a Special Leave Petition seeking its directive to the Rajasthan High Court in the case and also for ordering a CBI inquiry.