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Saturday 19 January 2013

SC Issues Notice to Gujarat Government (Zakia Jafri v/s Narendra Modi)

This judgment comes as A Kindly Light Amidst the Encircling Gloom. Let us hope and pray the masterminds will finally be brought to book.


January 17, 2013


The Supreme Court today issued notice to the Gujarat government and stayed Magistrate Ganatra's order dated 27.11.2013 closing Zakia Jafri's right to file a Protest Petition. Smt Zakia Jafri had, on 8.6.2006 filed a complaint alleging a sinister and wide level conspiracy to allow violence, deliberately subvert the strict directions to maintain order that led to the loss of over 2,500 minority lives. Chief Minister Narendra Modi, cabinet colleagues, senior IPS and IAS officers are among the 61 accused in this complaint. The Supreme Court had ordered investigation into the allegations on 27.4.2009 in the special leave petition filed by Smt Jafri and the Citizens for Justice and Peace. (SLP 1088/2008) Finally on 12.9.2011 the Supreme Court had directed that the matter be placed for consideration before a Magistrate under Section 173(2) and all documents related to the investigation be provided to the complainant.

We are praying for the right to get access to all investigations reports under Section 173(8) of the CRPC. Ever since the matter came up before the Magistrate in Ahmedabad, the SIT has been resisting making any documents available. An earlier Magistrate Bhatt (later transferred) granted Smt Jafri documents by an order dated 10.4.2012. Even after that, the SIT has been doggedly trying to conceal those further investigation reports that were submitted before the Supreme Court by Shri Malhotra and Shri Raghavan between May 2010 and July 2011 as they take a very different view from the Final Closure Report submitted by Himanshu Shukla on 8.2.2012. In his two reports to the Supreme Court, Amicus Curiae Shri Raju Ramachandran had come to the conclusion that there was sufficient material to prosecute chief minister Narendra Modi and at least two senior policemen.
The next date for Zakia Jafri's special leave petition is 7th February 2013. The CJP is assisting her legally in the case. This Special Leave Petition filed by Smt Jafri assisted by Citizens for Justice and Peace was specifically filed to get clarity on the Order of the Supreme Court that the SIT came misinterpreting before the Magistrate (SLP 8989/2012). This first came up for hearing on December 3, 2012. On December 10 last year the SC had asked Chairman SIT RK Raghavan to answer how previous statements of accused collected during investigation had not been made available to the complainant. Thereafter on December 15, 2012 about 1500 pages of documents were made available.

Now the pending issue in the matter remains the further investigation reports filed by SIT. The Supreme Court has also asked Amicus Curiae Shri Raju Ramachandran to assist the court in the matter.

Senior advocates Kamini Jaiswal and Sanjay Parikh appeared for Smt Jafri and CJP assisted by Ms. Aparna Bhat and Mr. Ramesh Pukhrambam. Advocate Mihir Desai has also been appearing in this matter.

Teesta Setalvad
Secretary and Trustee
Other Trustees:
I.M. Kadri                               Nandan Maluste                    Cyrus Guzder
Arvind Krishnaswamy              Javed Akhtar                         Alyque Padamsee 
Anil Dharker                           Ghulam Pesh Imam                Taizoon Khorakiwala
Rahul Bose                          Javed Anand                      Cedric Prakash

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