Ahmedabad: The Supreme Court appointed SIT has endorsed the `action and reaction` theory of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the Gulburg society massacre case, saying that firing by former MP Ehsaan Jaffery led to killing of 69 people in 2002.
The SIT has given clean chit to Modi, in a specific allegation made by Zakia Jaffery, the widow of former MP Ehsaan Jaffrey, that Modi made objectionable statements in an interview to a private television channel and a newspaper invoking Newton`s law of `action and reaction`.
The SIT has said that as per the correspondent of the private TV channel, Modi referred to Jaffery`s firing as "action" and massacre that followed as "reaction".
"During the interview, when questioned about Gulburg society massacre in which former MP Ehsaan Jaffery was killed along with 69 others, the CM referred to reports that Jaffery had first fired at the violent mob, which provoked mob and thereafter, it stormed the housing society and set it on fire," the SIT report said.
The SIT report further says that the exact quote was, "Kriya pratikriya ke chain chal rahi hai. Hum chaete hai ke na kriya ho, aur na pratikriya (A chain of action and reaction is going on. We neither want action nor reaction)."
When the correspondent asked Modi about widespread violence in Gujarat post-Godhra, the latter replied, "Godhra main jo purso hua, jaha par 40 mahilao aur bacho ko zinda jala diya, is main desh main aur videsh main sadma pauchna swabhavik tha. Godhra ke is ilake ke logo ki criminal tendencies rahe hai, in logo ne pelhe mahila teacher ka khoon kiya and ab ye jaghanya apradh kiya hai jiski pratikriya ho rahi hai."
(What happened in Godhra day before yesterday, where 40 women and children were burnt alive, this country and even foreign countries are shocked. People of that area of Godhra have criminal tendencies, they had earlier killed a lady teacher and now have committed this heinous crime, reaction to which are being felt).
The interview was given by Modi on March 1, 2002, while the Godhra train burning incident took place on February 27, 2002.
The so called utterances by Chief Minister Narendra Modi are not sufficient to make out a case against him, the SIT says in its report giving a clean chit to Modi for his statements.
In its conclusion, the SIT says, "In this connection, it
is to be stated that Shri Narendra Modi has clearly stated in his interview that it was late Ehsaan Jaffrey, ex-MP, who first fired at violent mob and the provoked mob stormed the Society and set it on fire. In this interview, he has clearly referred to Jaffrey’s firing as `action` and the massacre that followed as `reaction`.
"It may be clarified here that in case Jaffery fired at the mob, this could be an immediate provocation to the mob, which had assembled there to take revenge of Godhra incident from the Muslims," the SIT report further said.
Regarding the press statement about post-Godhra riots for citing Newton`s law, Modi said he has not given any interview to a leading English newspaper.
According to Modi, no reporter met him. He further stated that falsehood of his so called action-reaction story is evident from this fact, the SIT report said.
Modi has vehemently denied allegations that he had justified the riots by giving action-reaction theory, the SIT report said.
He also stated that it had been his opinion that violence could not be reciprocated with violence and therefore, he had appealed for peace.
The SIT has also strongly defended the chief minister against the charge, by citing its own March 2010 interrogation of Modi in which he had said: "As regards the Zee TV interview of 01-03-2002 is concerned, Shri Modi told SIT that after a period of eight years, he did not recollect the exact words but he had always appealed only and only for peace.
"He also said that if his words cited in this question are considered in the correct perspective, then it would be evident that there is a very earnest appeal for people refraining from any kind of violence....."
A book, `Rights and Wrong` published by Editor`s Guild contained excerpts from the TV interview.
The SIT had questioned the TV correspondent and asked him for a CD of the interview. The correspondent told the SIT he did not have the CD with him but recollected what Modi had said to him.