HC adjourns hearing on plea for summoning Modi

The Gujarat High Court today adjourned hearing till December 26 on a plea seeking direction for the Nanavati Commission to summon Chief Minister Narendra Modi for questioning in connection with the 2002 riots.

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court today
adjourned hearing till December 26 on a plea seeking direction
for the Nanavati Commission to summon Chief Minister Narendra
Modi for questioning in connection with the 2002 riots.

On April 22, a division bench of the then chief
Justice S J Mukhopadhaya and Justice Akil Kureshi had reserved
the order on petition by an NGO representing some of the riot
victims, Jan Sangharsh Manch (JSM), seeking questioning of the
Chief Minister and seven others.

But with Justice Mukhopadhaya being elevated to
Supreme Court in September the matter has been placed before
another bench consisting of Justice Kureshi and Justice Sonia
Gokani, which came up for hearing today.

Justice Kureshi today directed government pleader P K
Jani to get information from the state government about the
possibility of extension to the Nanavati Commission, the term
of which gets over on December 31.

The court said that after hearing the matter the order
should be meaningful and having such a short time to decide on
the plea puts strain on it.

It directed Jani to inform by December 19, in a
confidential manner, about the possibility of extension for
the Nanavati panel which was constituted in March 2002.

The court also said that after getting information
from government the hearing would begin from December 26.
The Nanavati Commission comprises of retired Justices
G T Nanavati and Akshay Mehta. The riot panel`s term has been
extended 17 times so far by the state government.

The JSM had approached the high court last year
seeking quashing of Commission`s order of not summoning Modi
and demanding issuance of summons to the CM, and six others
for cross examination with regard to the 2002 riots.

Mukul Sinha appearing for JSM had argued that
summoning of Modi and others was required for collecting
evidence with regard to the Godhra train burning incidents and
post-Godhra riots, and not questioning them would be against
the terms of reference of the Commission.

The state government had opposed JSM plea contending
that the NGO had no locus standi to seek summoning of Modi and
question him with regard to 2002 riots.

In September 2009, the Commission had rejected JSM`s
application seeking summoning of Modi and six others including
the then Home minister Gordhan Zadafia, for cross examination
with regard to 2002 riots, saying that they did not find
justification in cross-examining them at that point of time.

JSM than approached the High Court seeking quashing of
the Nanavati Commission`s order in November 2009. However, a
single bench of Justice K S Jhaveri dismissed its petition
saying that the Commission had not completed its inquiry and
still had power to summon Modi.

Following this JSM filed an appeal before division
bench of Justice Mukhopadhaya and Justice Kureshi where it
sought quashing of Commission`s order and issuance of summons
to Modi and others.

PTI

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. You can find out more by clicking this link

Close