Lucknow: A special CBI court on Friday sentenced three policemen; including two retired and one serving, in connection with the 1982 Gonda fake encounter case.
The court also awarded life term to five other accused, all retired policemen, in the three decade old case in Uttar Pradesh in which 13 persons, including a Deputy Superintendent of Police were killed.
Special CBI judge Rajendra Singh awarded death sentence to the then SHO, Kaudia RB Saroj, head constable Ram Nayak and constable Ram Karan holding them responsible for hatching the conspiracy of murder.
Those who have been awarded life sentence include the then PAC commandant Ramakant Dixit, sub-inspectors Naseem Ahmad, Mangala Singh, Parvez Hussain and Rajendra Prasad Singh.
The court had on March 29 passed the judgment convicting eight policemen and had fixed April 5 to pronounce the quantum of punishment.
Deputy SP and circle officer KP Singh and 12 other people were killed in the fake encounter in Madhopur village in March 1982.
Police initially claimed that Singh was killed by criminals, but his wife Vibha Singh suspected foul play and moved the Supreme Court, which ordered a CBI inquiry.
The CBI filed charge sheet against 19 policemen of which 10 died during the trial.
Later, one policeman Prem Singh was acquitted of the charges. As many as eight cops have been convicted by a special CBI court here in a 31-year-old fake encounter case in Gonda district in which 13 people, including a deputy superintendent of police, were killed.
The CBI, which investigated the case on the direction of the Supreme Court, had filed the chargesheet against 19 policemen. As many as 10 of them died during the trial.
DySP and circle officer K P Singh and 12 other people were killed in the fake encounter in Madhopur village in March 1982.
Those convicted include the then PAC commandant Ramakant Dixit, station house officer R B Saroj, sub-inspectors Naseem Ahmad, Mangal Singh, Parvez Hussain, Rajendra Prasad Singh, head constable Prem Narain Pandey and constable Ram Karan.
Kumar said during the trial it came to light that then sub-inspector R B Saroj developed enmity with Dy SP K P Singh as he had conducted an inquiry into charges against him. Yashpal Singh, then SP of Gonda, had ordered the inquiry on complaints of malpractices against R B Saroj, who headed a police station. After the inquiry, he was removed.
According to prosecution, on the intervening night of March 12 and 13, 1982, a police team went to the house of one Ram Baran Shukla at Madhopur village under Katra Bazaar after getting information about the presence of Ram Bhulawan and Arjun Pasi, both members of a criminal gang. The police team, which was led by the SP, was divided into three groups.
Deputy SP K P Singh, along with one group, went to the house of Ram Baran and knocked the door several times but no one responded, Singh turned around and was shot by R B Saroj in the chest. Singh was taken to hospital where doctors declared him brought dead.
The agency found that after Singh got injured, the policemen forcibly dragged 12 villagers out of their houses and shot them dead. They were later shown killed in ensuing encounter.
First Gonda police investigated the case and filed a closure report in the court. Sounding foul play, in 1983, K P Singh's wife Vibha Singh moved the Supreme Court, and demanded CBI probe. Vibha died in 2004.
His daughter Pranjal Singh said they had suffered for 31 years. Pranjal is Assistant Commissioner of Customs at Ambala. Her elder sister Kinjal Singh is District Magistrate of Bahraich.
In 1984, the Supreme Court had directed CBI investigation.