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'Sohrabuddin case witness staged own shootout'

CNN-IBN
Sep 16, 2010 at 12:31pm IST

Jaipur: In a new twist to the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case, the Udaipur police say the alleged shootout on key witness Azam Khan may have been staged by Khan himself.

Senior police officials say Khan's friend Iqbal had informed them that Khan had fabricated the story about an attempt on his life. They now believe Azam Khan may have planned the entire incident himself.

Both Azam Khan and Iqbal were questioned on Wednesday evening, and Khan was let off only late at night. The alleged attack occurred on Tuesday. Khan who earlier had said he didn't feel safe in Rajasthan, had claimed that masked men on motorcycles fired at him twice.

The police became suspicious when the bullets used in the attack couldn't be traced and no one witnessed the incident.

No arrests have been made in the case so far.

While commenting on the allegation of the police that the entire incident was fabricated, Azam Khan said, “They can call it whatever they want but I know that I was fired upon. The cops can ask me whatever and whenever but this is all that I have to say.”

Sanjeev Narjari, Udaipur SP said, “Azam Khan was detained for questioning and let off. No arrests have been made in the case yet. Weapons used in the shootout have not yet been recovered.”

On Tuesday in Rajasthan’s Udaipur, unknown assailants shot at Azam Khan. Khan had given evidence in the killing of Tulsiram Prajapati – an eyewitness to the alleged staged killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh.

Prajapati was killed in an alleged staged shoot-out in Gujarat's Banaskantha district on December 28, 2006 – over a year after Sohrabuddin was killed on the outskirts of Ahmedabad on November 26, 2005.

However, Azam Khan was hospitalised after the incident and his condition is now stable.

He was arrested in an extortion case by Udaipur police on Thursday. Khan has been accused of extortion from Mariam Marble owner in Udaipur in 2002.

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