A key witness in the Naroda Paitya riot case of 2002 today identified Maya Kodnani, a former minister in the Narendra Modi government and an accused, in a special court here.
Mohammed Salim Sheikh, deposing before designated judge Jyotsna Yagnik, said Kodnani had arrived in Naroda area here in a white car on February 28, 2002. She instigated the mob which had gathered there and asked them to target people from the minority community, he told the court.
Recalling the incident in which 95 people were killed eight years ago, Sheikh said on that fateful day he had gone to Milan Hotel in the locality when he saw a mob of over 1,500 youths coming from Kubernagar area.
He said the rioting mob was led by Kishan Korani, Manoj Videowala, Murli Sandhi and others. Sheikh said two of them, Videowala and Korani, fired from their revolvers, but he does not know if anybody was killed in the firing.
Sheikh, who identified five persons in the court, including Kodnani, said after the mob turned violent he somehow manged to escaped from the area.
He also claimed before the court that there was a larger conspiracy behind the post-Godhra riots, triggered by torching of the Sabarmati Express train.