Don`t disclose Modi`s statement: SC to SIT

SC has asked SIT not to make public Narendra Modi`s statement in connection with post-Godhra riots

New Delhi: The Supreme Court today asked
the Special Investigation Team (SIT) not to make public
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi`s statement in connection
with post-Godhra riots and disapproved the conduct of activist
Teesta Setalvad in contacting a prosecutor in one of the

“We direct the SIT not to divulge any information
collected during the course of investigation to anyone except
the trial court and public prosecutor concerned," a special
bench headed by Justice D K Jain said.

The direction came when it was pointed out to the
bench by the SIT that the Commission headed by Justice G T
Nanavati, probing the sequence of events in the 2002 riot
cases, has sought the statement of Modi recorded by the
investigating team.
"We direct that the statement shall not be supplied to
the Commission," the bench, also comprising Justices P
Sathasivam and Aftab Alam, said.

Modi`s statement was recorded by the SIT on March
27-28 in connection with the riots at the Gulbarg society in
Ahmedabad in which senior Congress leader Ehsan Jaffri was

The bench also took strong exception to Teesta
Setalvad contacting a prosecutor after an application of a
victim was rejected by the trial court.
"We cannot appreciate this. It is very serious," the
bench said and read out the comment of the supervising officer
Ashish Bhatia, who is a senior IPS officer.

It was alleged that after an application moved by
advocate Salim Sheikh was rejected by the trial court,
Setalvad on July 19 had telephoned Special Public Prosecutor R
C Kodekar and allegedly threatened to make complaint in the
apex court for objecting the plea.
Setalvad, who was present in the courtroom, admitted
calling Kodekar but said the allegations were false and she
only spoke about the witnesses.

The bench said it will accept her explanation but will
pass a formal order as such conduct was "unacceptable".
"We are making it clear that henceforth nobody except
the Chairman and members of the SIT will be in touch with the
public prosecutors.
"We also direct that if the SPPs engaged to conduct
trials of various cases want some inputs or faces difficulty,
they can keep themselves in touch with only the Chairman or
the members of the SIT for redressal of the same," the bench
said while making it clear that it was ending the matter
here itself.

However, after passing of the order, advocate Kamini
Jaiswal, raised objection to Bhatia continuing as the member
of the SIT on the ground that the IGP comes from the Gujarat

Bureau Report

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