Threat to life, but won’t budge: Sanjeev Bhatt

Out on bail, suspended Gujarat IPS officer Sanjeev Bhatt still fears for his life.

Last Updated: Nov 20, 2011, 21:18 PM IST

New Delhi: Out on bail, suspended Gujarat
IPS officer Sanjeev Bhatt still fears for his life and says
that people "deserve" the Narendra Modi government as the
state has been "laboratory of hatred politics".

Bhatt, who claims he is being targeted by the BJP
government in Gujarat, said the 2002 Godhra riots was one of
the best documented in history.
"I know I have threat to my life, but it is not going to
stop me. It is government`s responsibility to safeguard life
of every citizen of the country," he told reporters here on
the sidelines of a conference on human rights.

Bhatt was arrested on charges of forcing his subordinate,
KD Pant, to file a false affidavit against Gujarat Chief
Minister Narendra Modi, implicating him in the 2002 riots.

Averting a question on why he remained silent for so long
as the Gujarat riots took place in 2002, Bhatt said he had
already answered it several times.

On how Modi came back to power with a thumping majority
despite the riots, Bhatt said, "People get the government they
deserve. Gujarat has been laboratory of hatred politics."
Drawing similarity between 1984 anti-Sikh riots and 2002
Gujarat riots, Bhatt also made it clear that his raising of
voice was not motivated against a particular political unit
and he is of the view that any targetted violence, be it
communal or be it sectarian, should be stopped.

When asked how difficult it becomes for a civil servant
to work honestly if the government itself has vested interest,
Bhatt said, "A civil servant is obliged by law. He just need
not to do anything which is against the law. He may have to
pay a price for that, but he can do his duty by sticking to
basic constitutional principles."

He, however, was of the view that Gujarat Police were not
communalised during the post-Godhra carnage in the state.

"No it (Gujarat Police) is not communalised. We really
have a good force," he said.

Noting that the proposed communal violence bill can be of
great help in tackling such cases, Bhatt said that one man
single-handedly cannot tackle the situation and somewhere down
the line, he needs a constitutional backing.

"Our judicial system is very well structured. It may be a
bit time taking but it works. We need to trust it," he said.

He said ultimately it is the common man who bears the
brunt as most of the communal violences are politically
motivated.

"Public never wants riot. Ultimately, it is the poor
Hindu or the poor Muslim who gets perished," Bhatt said.

PTI