Skip to main content

Zakia files criminal revision application in High Court, says magistrate's "clean chit" to Modi has no basis

By Our Representative
Slain MP Ehsan Jafri’s widow Zakia Ahsan Jafri has filed criminal revision application before the Gujarat High Court challenging the order of the metropolitan magistrate rejecting her protest petition seeking top “arraign” BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and 59 others on charges of “criminal conspiracy, abetment to commit mass murder, arson and rape and also tamper with evidence and destroy valuable records of the Gujarat home department.” She filed the revision appeal on March 15, 2014, which is expected to come up for hearing on March 20, 2014.
A statement issued by the Citizens for Peace and Justice (CPJ), which is backing Jafri, said, Jafri has prayed for the rejection of the closure report of the special investigation team (SIT) dated February 8, 2012. The magistrate had, on December 26, 2013 rejected the protest petition filed by Jafri. This happened despite “substantive arguments seeking to establishing strong suspicion of a conspiracy committed at the highest level were made by the petitioner’s advocates and detailed written and oral submissions”, the statement said.
Running into 540 pages, the criminal revision application points towards, according to the statement, “the double-faced role played by the SIT once the matter stopped being monitored by the Supreme Court and was handed over to the crime branch, Ahmedabad”. It added, “By not dealing with the substantive arguments laid down by Jafri in written and oral submissions, the judge has simply accepted the contentions in the closure report with a non-application of mind.”
The statement said, “The metropolitan magistrate failed to consider the following material that was put to establish prima facie the involvement of Modi in conspiracy and abetment:
“(I) Evidence on phone call contact between Modi and co-conspirators as soon as news of Godhra Incident occurred;
“(II) Failure to take preventive measures and instead support a bandh, allow post mortems of gruesome burned bodies in the open and, in short, allow the streets of cities and villages to be taken over by rampaging mobs;
“(III) Instructions to high-level policemen and bureaucrats to not follow the law and on the next day Cabinet Ministers were posted in control rooms to ensure that these illegal instructions were carried out; and
“(IV) Destruction of key records of the CMO and the home department and tampering with others to obstruct the cause of justice.”
It further said, “The magistrate erred in holding that neither Sanjiv Bhatt nor Haren Pandya’s presence at the meeting on February 27, 2002 could be believed. The magistrate erred in believing the versions of the other persons present at the meeting when they were themselves accused in the present case and could not be expected to tell the truth. The magistrate ought to have accepted the observation of the Amicus Curie that the matter needed to be tested in the trial.”
In fact, it said, the magistrate “ignored the contradictions in the statements of various accused regarding who was present and what was spoken at the meeting. The magistrate also erred in not relying on the statement of Sanjiv Bhatt’s driver. In fact the magistrate ought to have drawn adverse inference on the basis of the missing log book of the car.”
Then, the “magistrate … failed to appreciate the true significance of the statement made by Haren Pandya before the Concerned Citizens Tribunal before retired judges of the High Court and the Supreme Court.” He “failed to appreciate the statements given to the SIT in this connection by two retired judges: one of the Supreme Court and another of the High Court.”
In fact, the statement said, the magistrate “ought to have held that at least three witnesses, i.e. Sanjiv Bhatt, RB Sreekumar and Rahul Sharma, all serving officers had all testified (given evidence/statements) so as to bring out a case of conspiracy and involvement of the accused in various offences. He ought to have realized that the veracity of these witnesses could only have been tested during a criminal trial and there was no justification to disbelieve them at this stage.”
Pointing out that the magistrate also “erred in holding that the protest petition could not be treated as a complaint”, the statement concluded, he “completely ignored or failed to apply judicial mind to the fact that there was overwhelming evidence collected by the SIT itself to send the accused to trial.”
The statement has been signed by trustees of CPJ, I.M. Kadri, Nandan Maluste, Teesta Setalvad, Cyrus Guzder, Javed Akhtar, Alyque Padamsee, Anil Dharker, Ghulam Pesh Imam, Javed Anand, Rahul Bose and Cedric Prakash.



Comments

TRENDING

Missed call drive for VVPAT verification follows online plea to "pressure" poll panel

By Our Representative
Several political activists have begun a new campaign, asking concerned citizens to give a missed call on 9667655855 to “support the demand that 2019 Loksabha elections must be declared only after verification of 50% electronic voting machines (EVMs) with Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) receipts.” The effort, supported by civil society networks across India, is meant to "further pressure" India's election machinery to ensure that the poll outcome becomes more transparent.

Now, top Gujarat "litterateur" close to Modi says: Godse was patriot, so was Gandhi

By Rajiv Shah
A little over a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi criticized BJP candidate from Bhopal Pragya Thakur for calling Nathuram Godse a patriot saying he would never forgive her for the remark, a top Sangh Parivar ideologue, known to close to Modi in Gujarat, has supported her, saying her statement should be seen “within a context.” Thakur won from Bhopal by more than 3.5 lakh votes defeating her nearest rival, veteran Congressman and ex-Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijay Singh.

Opposition refuses to legally challenge EVMs amidst plans of "back to ballot" protest

Counterview Desk
Even as opposition to the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) allegedly to rig polls is growing, a group of prominent citizens who have come together to form the EVM Virodhi Rashtriya Jan Andolan has controversially called for a national protest against EVMs on May 30, demanding future elections should be held only on ballot paper.

When a Pak scribe said Modi has 'proved' Jinnah’s two nation theory right...

By Zafar Agha*
It was around nine in the morning on May 24, 2019, a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi stormed the Lok Sabha with 300-plus MPs. It was a call from a journalist friend, Muzamal Suhrawardy, from Lahore, Pakistan. I ignored the call. We liberals had a depressing day the previous evening as the opposition to Modi and BJP collapsed. The results belied reports from the ground and even assessments made by colleagues.

Savarkar in Ahmedabad "declared support" to two-nation theory in 1937, followed by Jinnah three years later

By Our Representative
One of the top freedom fighters whom BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi revere the most, Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, was also a great supporter of the two nation theory for India, one for Hindus another for Muslims, claims a new expose on the man who is also known to be the original proponent of the concept of Hindutva.

It's now official: Akshay Kumar has not been conferred honorary Canadian citizenship

By Our Representative
It is now official. Super-star Akshay Kumar has not been conferred any honorary citizenship by Canadian authorities, as claimed by him ahead of the 2019 elections. In reply to a query by Roshan Shah, who is a Canadian citizen living in Waterloo, Ontario, and belongs to Ahmedabad, the country’s authorities dealing with issues related with immigration, refugees and citizenship in Canada have said that only six persons have so far been granted honorary citizenship.

Govt of India overestimated GDP by 2.5%, must restore reputational damage: Ex-CEA

By Rajiv Shah
Top economist Arvind Subramanian has said that changes brought about by the Government of India in data sources and methodology for estimating the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) since 2011-12 “has led to a significant overestimation of growth”. While official estimates place annual average GDP growth between 2011-12 and 2016-17 at about 7 percent, the actual growth may have been 4½ percent, ranging from 3 ½ to 5 ½ percent during the period, he adds.

Common thread of Modi, political Hinduism, nationalism? 'Contest' of ideas isn't over

By Salman Khurshid*
Losing the 2019 election and that too in a somewhat extreme manner has confronted us with unexpected challenges: Our leadership has naturally taken it very hard and to heart but with suggested options that we cannot imagine or contemplate. Hopefully the emotions will settle soon and give us the direction to pick up the pieces and march again.

If EC's credibility is under question, shouldn't one "assume" EVMs might be tampered?

Counterview Desk
Gauhar Raza, scientist, documentary film maker and poet; senior human rights activist Shabnam Hashmi of the Act Now for Harmony and Democracy (ANHAD); military veteran Major Priyadarshi Chowdhury (retd); and Sucheta De and Sandeep Saurav of the All India Students' Association (AISA), have asked “individuals, organisations and people's movements” to send their endorsement to an appeal they have prepared on Electronic Voting Machine (EVM).

Will minorities in India be 2nd class citizens? Wake up call: Be a 'communicating' Church

By Fr Cedric Prakash sj*
India today is at a defining moment of her history. There is so much that has taken place in the past five years (and particularly in the last ten days)- that several citizens of the country are genuinely concerned about the future of the country! Will democracy survive? Will key elements of the Constitution be changed?