Ahmedabad: A sessions court on Tuesday granted
anticipatory bail to social activist Teesta Setalvad in
connection with a case pertaining to filing false affidavits
in the name of post-Godhra riot victims.
Additional sessions judge SB Gajre, while granting
bail, ordered Setalvad to deposit her passport with the court
within three days and also asked her to produce a personal
bond of Rs 25,000.
The court also asked her to remain present before the
investigation officer of the case whenever asked to.
Setalvad had sought anticipatory bail following the
allegations of filing false affidavits on behalf of the
victims of the Naroda Gam riot case of 2002.
The allegations were made by her former aide Rais
Eleven persons of a minority community were killed by
a mob following the Godhra train carnage on February 28, 2002
at Naroda Gam area here.
The court, while providing relief to Setalvad,
observed that being a human rights activist of international
repute, Setalvad is unlikely to run away from the probe.
It further observed that the evidence in the case was
the affidavits which were already on record of the court and
hence cannot be tampered as contended by the Gujarat
government while opposing Setalvad`s bail.
Considering the assurance given by Setalvad for
cooperating with the probe agency, the court granted her
anticipatory bail, Setalvad`s lawyer SM Vora said.
Setalvad`s former aide Rais Khan has maintained that
false affidavits in the name of 2002 riot victims against the
accused of the Naroda Gam case, had been filed in a sessions
court at the behest of the activist.
Setalvad, according to Khan, used to send readymade
affidavits to him on email.
Khan had further alleged that he used to get the false
affidavits signed by the victims who were witnesses for
Setalvad, who headed NGO Center for Justice and Peace.
During the hearing, Setalvad had contended that she
was being targeted by the Gujarat government because of a
petition she had jointly filed with Zakia Jaffery, wife of
slain ex-MP Ehsan Jaffery, in the Supreme Court.
Ehsan Jaffery was killed during the 2002 riots in
Gulburg Society along with 69 others.
The state government, while opposing Setalvad`s bail
plea, had contended that she would hamper the probe, influence
witnesses with her clout or money if released on bail.
Setalvad moved for anticipatory bail after the Gujarat
High Court last month gave a go ahead for a probe against
Khan, accused of fabricating evidence, while rejecting his
plea challenging the FIR filed against him.
The FIR was lodged against Khan in December 2010
following orders of Justice SH Vohra while hearing the 2002
Naroda Gam case.