SIT allowed to probe further in Gujarat riots cases
The Supreme Court today permitted the Special Investigation Team probing the 2002 Gujarat riots to carry out further investigation into the cases, including the killing of ex-Congress MP Ehsan Jafri in which Chief Minister Narendra Modi has been questioned for his alleged role.delhi Updated: Aug 19, 2010 20:46 IST
The Supreme Court on Thursday permitted the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the 2002 Gujarat riots to carry out further investigation into the cases, including the killing of ex-Congress MP Ehsan Jafri in which Chief Minister Narendra Modi has been questioned for his alleged role.
The order was passed by a special Bench headed by Justice DK Jain after SIT's chief and former CBI Director RK Raghavan made a plea that some more persons were required to be interrogated.
The Bench noted that the SIT wanted to probe the alleged involvement of former Gujarat minister G Zadafia and MK Tandon, a senior police officer and two other policemen.
Senior advocate Ram Jethmalani, appearing for a local MLA who has been named as an accused in the complaint filed by Jafri's widow, submitted that he should be heard for his plea seeking recall of the April 27, 2009 order asking SIT to look into Zakia Jafri's allegations.
The court said it would look into it later as the SIT was proceeding for probe against some people.
The senior advocate submitted that the filing of the reports in the sealed cover was like an anathema to the judicial process and asked the court to bring them in the public domain.
Meanwhile, former CBI DIG A K Malhotra, who was appointed by the apex court to verify allegations of lapses in investigations being conducted by the SIT into 2002 Gujarat communal riots, including the Gulbarg society case in which Jafri was killed, submitted its report in the sealed cover.
The report also contained the comments of the SIT chief Raghavan.
The Bench said the report would be handed over to advocate Prashant Bhushan, who is assisting the court as amicus curiae, in the petition filed by Jafri's widow.
It made it clear to Bhushan that he would maintain the confidentiality of the report.
"We expect that you will keep the copy of the report to yourself," the Bench also, comprising Justices P Sathasivam and Aftab Alam, said.
The order to this effect was passed amid protest by the Gujarat government counsel, who wanted Bhushan to be out of the Jafri matter.
The state government counsel sought that the petition of Jafri be tagged with other riots cases.
"Bhushan has some pre-concieved view on subject," the counsel said.
His opposition was not accepted by the Bench, which said "Bhushan will only be assisting us as an amicuc curiae".