‘Gujarat riots a dark blot on India`s reputation’

Last Updated: Monday, February 27, 2012 - 19:55

New York: Terming the 2002 Gujarat riots a
"dark blot" on India`s reputation, a global rights` group
today said the Narendra Modi-led state government has "failed"
to conduct serious investigations and "obstructed" justice.

New York-based Human Rights Watch said a decade into one
of the worst communal riots in Gujarat, top officials in the
state government involved in the riots should be brought to
justice. Indian courts also need to expedite the remaining
cases and protect activists.

"Ten years on, India owes it to the victims of the
Gujarat riots to end the culture of impunity and prosecute
those responsible for this open wound on the country`s
reputation," South Asia director at Human Rights Watch
Meenakshi Ganguly said.

Human Rights Watch said the state government has resisted
Supreme Court orders to prosecute those responsible for the
carnage and has failed to provide most survivors with
compensation.

"Officials of the Gujarat state government, led by Chief
Minister Modi of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party
(BJP), which is serving its third term running the state
government in Gujarat, failed to conduct serious
investigations and obstructed justice," it said.

The large-scale communal violence that hit many parts of
Gujarat killed 1,200 people, mostly Muslims.

"The 2002 violence against Muslims in Gujarat persists as
a dark blot on India`s reputation for religious equality,"
Ganguly said.

"Instead of prosecuting senior state and police officials
implicated in the atrocities, the Gujarat authorities have
engaged in denial and obstruction of justice," she said.

HRW said efforts to investigate and prosecute cases
inside Gujarat were stalled and activists and lawyers involved
in the cases have been harassed and intimidated.

PTI



First Published: Monday, February 27, 2012 - 19:55

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