Godhra Riots Case: SIT to Submit Report against Modi, Others

In connection with post-Godhra riots, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) is going to submit a progress report on the preliminary investigation on a complaint against Chief Minister Narendra Modi and 62 others, said a report quoting SIT sources.

It may be mentioned that the SIT, which was formed at instructions of the Supreme Court to probe the Godhra train carnage case and eight other post-Godhra riot cases, had instructions to simultaneously examine the complaint by Zakia Jaffery and submit report in three months.

Zakia, wife of ex-MP Ehsan Jaffrey who was killed with 39 others in 2002 riots in Gulburg Society, has alleged that Modi, his cabinet colleagues, police officials and senior bureaucrats aided and abetted post-Godhra riots in which over 1000 people were killed.

The High Court dismissed a petition challenging the inquiry a day after. According to sources, SIT Chief R K Raghavan will be submitting the progress report to the Supreme Court in a couple of days as the three-month deadline ends on July 27.

“The probe into the complaint will continue until further orders from the apex court,” they said.  SIT has till date recorded statements of Zakia, co-complainant Tista Setalvad and few other witnesses.

Sources said that none of the persons named in Zakia’s complaint has been interrogated by the SIT. Besides Modi, Zakia has named the then ministers Gordhan Zadaphia, Ashok Bhatt, Police Commissioner P C Pande and others.

Yesterday, the Gujarat High Court had dismissed a petition filed by former MLA Kalu Malivad challenging the probe against Modi and others.

The SIT had told the High Court that it was conducting ‘preliminary inquiry’ into case while replying to the petition.

It had said that they are doing inquiry which is done before registering a complaint, to find out the truth about the allegations made in the complaint.

Raising legal question on the probe being carried out by SIT, Malivad had contended that the apex court had asked SIT to “look into” the complaint and that doesn’t empower it to investigate as per provisions of CrPC, as there was no FIR in this matter.

Appearing on behalf of SIT, senior counsel K G Menon had submitted before the court that according to the SC order their job was to find out the truth with regard to the allegations made in the complaint.  As the SC order had stated that SIT needed to take necessary steps as per law, a preliminary inquiry in the matter was permissible, and that what SIT was doing, he said.

The petition was dismissed by the High Court stating that since SIT was working directly under their supervision of Supreme Court no relief can be granted.

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