Bilkis Bano case: IPS officer dismissed

first_imgGujarat cadre IPS officer R.S. Bhagora, an accused in the 2002 Bilkis Bano case, was dismissed from service by the Union Home Ministry on May 30, a day before his retirement on May 31. The 60-year-old officer was set to retire on May 31 and was serving as Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) with the Ahmedabad police when his dismissal order came. Mr. Bhagora was promoted to IPS from the State police service in 2009. His dismissal from the service means he would not get any post-retirement benefits from the government.Earlier in March this year, the Supreme Court had asked the Gujarat government to take disciplinary action against the erring police officials, including Mr. Bhagora, convicted by the Bombay High Court for dereliction of duty in the Bilkis Bano gang-rape case.Among the police officials, four — a deputy superintendent of police, two inspectors and a constable — have retired from service. Compensation fiatSubsequently in April, the Supreme Court directed the Gujarat government to give ₹50 lakh as compensation, a government job with accommodation to Ms. Bano who was gangraped in one of the worst mass murder cases in the 2002 Gujarat riots. During the post-Godhara communal riots in Gujarat, 14 members of Ms. Bilkis’ family were killed, including her two-and-half-year old daughter who was snatched from her mother’s arms and smashed on a rock.The case was handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation and trial was moved out of Gujarat to Maharashtra in the interests of justice by the Supreme Court. A special court in Mumbai had awarded life sentence to 11 persons for raping Ms. Bano, who was five months pregnant at the time of the heinous crime. The trial court, however, acquitted five policemen, including Mr. Bhagora, who were booked for dereliction of duty in the high-profile case.The Bombay High Court in 2017 reversed the lower court order and convicted the accused five policemen under Sections 218 (not performing their duties) and 201 (tampering with evidence) of the Indian Penal Code.The Supreme Court on July 10, 2017 dismissed the appeals of Mr. Bhagora and the other policemen against the High Court order, stating there was “clear-cut evidence” against them.last_img

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