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NEW DELHI: The 18 rifles used by Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) jawans to allegedly mow down 42 Muslims of Mohalla Hashimpura at Meerut in 1987 have been redistributed among the personnel of the force, much to the surprise of the trial judge.
The shifting of the case property, a vital evidence, from the custody of the investigating agency has put a question mark on the fate of the 19-year-old case transferred to Delhi from Ghaziabad on the orders of the Supreme Court in 2002.
The rifles had been sent to CFSL, Hyderabad for forensic analysis and the report has already come.
Additional Sessions Judge N P Kaushik, who sought to see the case property on the second day of the trial on July 22, was shocked to know that the rifles had been redistributed among the jawans of 41-B Vahini Battalion of the PAC. Incidentally, the accused also belonged to the same Battalion.
The court has asked Special Public Prosecutor S Adhlakha and Additional SP of CB-CID, Meerut to produce the rifles in court on July 31, the next date of hearing.
It also sought to know who gave the order to return the weapons to PAC.
Legal experts are divided on the issue calling it either a "destruction of evidence" or "an unintentional foolish act" on the part of the investigating agency.
"This is destruction of evidence and is punishable under the law," senior lawyer PN Lekhi said.
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