Guj riots: Differences in SIT`s 2010, 2012 reports

There are many differences between the preliminary inquiry reports of the SIT and its final investigation report.

Ahmedabad: There are many differences between the preliminary inquiry reports of the SIT and its final investigation report, which gave clean chit to Gujarat Chief minister Narendra Modi in the 2002 riots case.

The preliminary inquiry report filed by SIT, headed by RK Raghavan, in 2010, had substantiated eight allegations leveled by the complainant Zakia Jafri, widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, against the state administration. However, the final investigation report has given it a clean chit.

In an application before a local court yesterday Zakia demanded some crucial documents from the SIT, including Raghavan`s comments on the preliminary inquiry report that was submitted by the SIT in the Supreme Court in 2010, besides all the reports that were filed by the SIT from time to time in the apex court about the investigation.

The allegations that were substantiated in the preliminary report of 2010 was that the two senior ministers of Modi government Ashok Bhatt and I K Jadeja were positioned in Ahmedabad city police control room and state police control room respectively on February 28, 2002, when the Gulberg Society massacre took place. The SIT report said that the allegation is partly substantiated.

However, in its 2012 final report the SIT said that though Jadeja was present in the state police control room, he did not interfere with the police work.

The report further said that there is no proof of Ashok Bhatt being present in the Ahmedabad city police control room.

On the action-reaction statement of Modi during in an interview to Zee TV, the 2010 report says, "His (Modi`s) statement on Zee TV was too strong at a time when feelings were running high. This showed a measure of thoughtlessness and irresponsibility on part of a person holding high public office".

However, the 2012 report said that though such a statement was said by Modi, it does not amount to any type of offence. The SIT report further said, "As per Modi`s version he had not and would never justify any action or reaction by a mob against innocents".

The allegations as per the 2010 report that Modi visited
Godhra on the same day of the incident, but went to Naroda and Gulburg only on March 6, "which shows his partisan attitude". The SIT report says that the allegation is substantiated.

But the 2012 final report says that Modi`s OSD Sanjay Bhavsar told the SIT that the chief minister had visited Naroda Patiya and Gulburg Society after the riots on March 3. He had also accompanied LK Advani (the then Union Home Minister) to riot affected areas of the city. The SIT concludes that it cannot be said that Modi had a partisan attitude.

In the 2010 report, the SIT says bodies of 54 victims of Godhra train burning case were handed over to VHP activist Jaideep Patel. The SIT had then described it as an `irresponsible` act saying the bodies were a case property.

However, in its 2012 report, the SIT says that although the bodies were handed over to Patel, police had accompanied while they were carried to Ahmedabad`s sole civil hospital, where the post-mortem was conducted and police, along with city and hospital administration, handed over the identified bodies to the relatives of the victims.

Other allegations that were substantiated in the 2010 report includes that there were no minutes were maintained about the meeting held by the CM and senior bureaucrats and no direction was given by Modi to Hindu organisations against the bandh call given on February 28, 2002.

The allegations that pro-VHP advocates were appointed as public prosecutors in riot cases and failing to take action against print media for making communally inciting reports were also substantiated in the 2010 report.

However, the final report has given a clean chit to the administration and Modi regarding all these allegations.


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