Shehla Masood murder: CBI weaves a web
Posted April 17, 2012on:
The CBI, entrusted with the task of solving the Shehla Masood murder case, has woven a web around itself; it will be some time before it can be seen coming out of it, if it can really come out of it. At present, the agency is investigating the allegation of bribery against its investigating team. The allegation was levelled by Sabah Farooqui who was an aide of interior designer Zahida Parvez, considered by the CBI till some time back as the main culprit; the CBI officers had been claiming that she had confessed her crime with full operational details. Both Zahida and Sabah are in judicial custody and lodged in an Indore jail.
Shehla Masood, in her late thirties, was found shot dead in her car around 11 in the morning of August 16 last year. A vibrant RTI activist and supporter of Anna Hazare’s campaign against corruption, she was galvanised by the news of Hazare’s arrest in Delhi that morning and had planned, along with fellow RTI activists, a signature campaign at the Boat Club at 2 pm in support of Anna Hazare.
Four days later the case was entrusted to the CBI for investigation.
Zahida has recorded her statement under Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure in which she was said to have denied any role in the murder of Shehla Masood. Sabah has not yet made up her mind about recording her statement. However, Zahida and Sabah had “told” the media persons that Dhruv Narayan Singh was the mastermind behind Shehla’s murder. Singh is a BJP MLA and was chairman of the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (MPTDC) till May last year. The CBI has grilled him and searched his residences a number of times and also conducted a polygraph test on him. Singh was also a vice-president of the State BJP and was removed from that post after the CBI started questioning him in connection with the Shehla Masood murder case.
The CBI has made a big issue of the “intimate relations” between Dhruv
Narayan Singh and Zahida Parvez which they have not denied. Beyond that, the CBI does not have found any evidence to link Singh with the crime — at least so far.
Curiously, Zahida and Sabah did not name Singh in the court when they were produced for extension of their judicial remand. It was only when they were being taken back to the jail that media persons asked them about the culprit and they named Singh as the mastermind — first Zahida and then Sabah a day later. Sabah also added that the CBI officers had taken money from Singh and that was why they were not arresting him.
The CBI bosses in Delhi, it seems, were disturbed. They promptly despatched Assistant Superintendent T Rajah Balaji to Bhopal to ascertain the veracity of Sabah’s allegation and if there really is substantial evidence against Dhruv Narayan Singh and the investigators were not arresting him for monetary considerations.