Himachal officer suspended in custodial death case

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh government has again suspended Inspector General of Police ZH Zaidi, DGP Sitaram Mardi said Thursday but refused to disclose the reason for the suspension.

When asked why Zaidi was suspended, the DGP said he has been suspended by the home secretary, “talk to him to know the reason why he was suspended”. Zaidi was posted as CEO of the state wakf board.

Previously, Zaidi was suspended in 2017 after his arrest in connection with the custodial death of a Nepalese national in the Gudia rape and murder case and then reinstated in November last year. Sources said he has been suspended again after IPS officer Soumya Sambasivan recently told a CBI court in Chandigarh that she was being pressured by Zaidi to change her statement in the custodial death case.

Eight police personnel, including IG Zaidi and DSP Manoj Joshi, were arrested by CBI on August 29, 2017, while DW Negi was arrested on November 16, 2017.

Suraj, an accused in the Gudia rape and murder case, was killed in the Kotkhai police station in July 2017. he 16-year-old girl had gone missing in Kotkhai on July 4, 2017, and her body was found from Halaila forests two days later. The autopsy had confirmed rape and murder.