New Delhi, April 14: One of the petitioners in 2004 Ishrat Jahan encounter case, Gopinath Pillai, died in a road accident in Alappuzha district of Kerala. Gopinath Pillai was the father of Pranesh Kumar Pillai who was also shot dead by the Gujarat police.

As per the reports, Pillai was going to Kochi for a medical checkup when his car got hit by a truck on Wednesday. Pillai suffered from multiple injuries and he was rushed to nearby hospital but he succumbed to his injuries. His brother was also traveling with him in the car and is reported to be stable.

Ishrat Jahan Encounter Case:
Early on the morning of 15 June 2004, Ishrat Jahan, Javed Sheikh, Zeeshan Johar and Amjad Ali Rana were shot dead on the road leading to the Kotarpur waterworks on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. A magisterial inquiry, SIT probe and CBI investigation – all concluded that this was a fake encounter and the police claim of having fired at her in ‘self-defense’ was a lie.

The police said they were intercepted on the outskirts of Ahmedabad when they were about to enter the city to eliminate the then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. In 2009, Gopinath moved the Gujarat High Court and sought a CBI probe into the killing of the four. Ahmedabad Metropolitan court in its judgment said that this encounter was staged and it was challenged by the state.

Almost a decade after the fake encounter, in July 2013, a charge sheet was filed against seven Gujarat police officials and (in a supplementary charge sheet in February 2014) four Intelligence Bureau officials for the unlawful killings, abduction, criminal conspiracy etc.

According to reports, the police said that Pillai’s son Pranesh had changed his name to Javed Sheikh to marry a Muslim woman.

(With agency inputs)