A local court here has granted the wish of former Director General of Police (DGP) of Tamil Nadu Prateep V. Philip to have the name badge and the cap – that he had worn on May 21, 1991, his advocate Sanjay Pinto said.
According to Pinto, the court has granted the permanent custody of the name badge and the cap that he had worn on May 21, 1991 which were under the Central Bureau of India’s (CBI) custody.
It was on that fateful day that former Prime Minister and Congress leader Rajiv Gandhi was killed by a female suicide bomber belonging to Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Sriperumbudur.
Philip, a 1987 batch officer was then an Assistant Superintendent of Police (SP) at Kancheepuram District and was on security duty at Sriperumbudur when the blast took place.
He was thrown away and was hopsitalised. His name badge and the blood stained cap were found at the site and were case exhibits.
Last year a local court had granted Philip temporary custody of the name badge and the cap though he had sought the permission for permanent custody.
The CBI counsel then said the agency was agreeable for interim custody of those two items and not for permanent custody.
Philip retired on September 30, 2021 with his wish granted by a City Court on September 28, 2021. He had to execute a bond for Rs 100,000.
Last year the court had agreed that the two items are of sentimental value for Philip, “a reminder of the call of duty during his formative years in the service of nation and quite literally symbolise his blood, sweat and tears over 34 years of his professional career as accentuated by his counsel.”
“We found the shoes worn by Rajiv Gandhi on that fateful day were kept in a museum and argued that when the property of the primary victim is not with CBI why should that of a person who suffered collateral damage be with the probe agency,” Pinto told IANS.
He also said items used in commission of an offence are returned back to the owner and in this case cap and name badge were just collateral items and not that were used in committing the offence.