Jaitley says facts being concocted in Gulberg case



New Delhi: A day after Supreme Court-appointed SIT gave a clean chit to Gujarat CM Narendra Modi in the post-Godhra Gulberg massacre case, BJP on Wednesday said "unsuccessful attempts" were made to drag in political leaders in the case by "concocting" certain facts.

Commenting on the report of the Special Investigation Team, senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley said there was no reason to celebrate the findings of the panel as complaints were made against politicians with a political intention though there was no evidence against them.

"This was an unsuccessful attempt to drag in political names. I am sure this attempt has succeeded in terms of propaganda in media. In terms of legal evidence, there is none. Therefore this effort is not likely to succeed," he said replying to a question on the issue.

"The matter is now before court. There is no question of celebrating (the clean chit to Modi). There is no question of condemning," he said.

A court in Ahmedabad yesterday in its order said that the SIT has not found any evidence against Modi and 57 others against whom Zakia Jafri, widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, had filed complaint alleging their involvement in criminal conspiracy in the 2002 riots. Ehsan Jafri was among 69 persons killed in the Gulberg society carnage.

Noting that Supreme Court complimented the SIT for its probe into the riots, Jaitley said the charge sheet filed by the SIT in the case did not figure names of political leaders but complaints were filed at a later stage against politicians as a "political after thought".

"After the charge sheet had proceeded and the Supreme Court complimented the SIT for its effective work as a political after thought, a second complaint is made which is completely dominated by a political intention with political leaders brought in. Obviously, there was no evidence of their involvement in the case," Jaitley said.

Claiming that certain facts were "concocted" to frame politicians in the case, he said the probe by the SIT into the case was a professional and independent investigation. "We believe certain facts were concocted and the SIT has rightly believed them to be fabricated and concocted," the BJP leader said.

Zakia had filed a complaint against Modi, his ministerial colleagues, top police officials and BJP functionaries accusing them of wider conspiracy in the riots in which more than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, had been killed.

The apex court had ordered an inquiry into the complaint filed by her and appointed the SIT headed by R K Raghavan to probe it. The SIT now has sought closure of the case, the Ahmedabad court said.

Reacting to the SIT's closure report, Zakia said she was "pained" and vowed to continue her battle for justice while BJP said the 2002 riots cannot be used as a "bogey" to sustain the campaign against Modi.

PTI