Former Director-General of Police (DGP)-Training Prateep V Philip had one wish prior to his retirement — to sport the name badge and the cap that he had worn on 21 May 1991, his advocate Sanjay Pinto said.
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, he was on security duty at Sriperumbudur when the blast occurred.
He was thrown away and was hospitalised. His name badge and the blood stained cap were found at the site.
"Philip wanted to file a petition to get back that name badge and the cap. We had asked for permanent custody as they were just case exhibits and all avenues for appeal in that assassination case has been exhausted," Pinto told IANS.
However the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) counsel said the agency is agreeable for interim custody of those for two items and not for permanent custody.
Philip retired on Thursday, 30 September, with his wish granted by a City Court on Tuesday, 28 September. He had to execute a bond for Rs 1,00,000.
As per the court order, Philip can be in the possession of the name badge and the cap till 28 September 2021 and has to hand them back to the court on or before that date.
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 the nation and quite literally symbolise his blood, sweat, and tears over 34 years of his professional career as accentuated by his counsel".