71 affidavits against minister, none owned
The judicial commission formed to investigate Kishtwar violence hasn't found any involvement of former minister of state for home Sajjad Kitchloo, as none of the 71 people who had filed affidavit against him has owned any statement.india Updated: Dec 22, 2013 17:37 IST
The judicial commission formed to investigate Kishtwar violence hasn't found any involvement of former minister of state for home Sajjad Kitchloo, as none of the 71 people who had filed affidavit against him has owned any statement.
Kitchloo, who had resigned on August 12, was re-inducted in the ministry on Saturday as MoS, home, a day after justice (retd) RS Gandhi had submitted its interim report. "The report was based on cross-examination of the people who had filed the statements," said justice Gandhi. On August 9, three people were killed in communal violence in Kishtwar and nearly 100 shops set ablaze. Parliament debated the issue, and Bharatiya Janata Party senior leader Arun Jaitley was barred from going to Kishtwar.
"When the commission read out affidavits to 71 people individually, most of them said while their name and parents' details were correct, the statement was not, even though they had signed it," said a source. Almost all of these affidavits were filed the same day and attested by a particular notary.
Some of the people to file affidavit had even pointed to the robbing of guns from the minister's shops before the violence under a ploy. The BJP had blamed Kitchloo, who was in the town to celebrate Id that day, for the violence and demanded his resignation.
41 supporters also don't own statements
Even the 41 people who filed affidavits in support of Kitchloo didn't own their statements before the commission.
The commission had recorded the statements of 357 witnesses. Formed on August 23, it held its first official meeting on September 12. All evidence was in on December 19, and report out in 31 working days. The commission had also recommended strengthening the village defence committees (VDCs). "Separatists have launched a sinister campaign against the VDCs. Evidence suggests that if the committees are not strengthened, militancy may return and Kisthwar may become land of massacres," the report had said.
It had also said that only a few Muslims had joined the VDCs earlier because of fear but now with improved situation, ex-servicemen from the community could be inducted without disturbing the existing teams. The commission awaits the reply to the questionnaire sent to the police intelligence department top be able to submit its final report.