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Gujarat riots: Amit Shah appears in court as Maya Kodnani’s witness

The court summoned the BJP chief to appear before it last week based on a request by former BJP minister Maya Kodnani, who has been sentenced to life in another riot case in Naroda Patiya.

india Updated: Sep 18, 2017 12:10 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Ahmedabad
2002 Gujarat riots,Amit Shah,Maya Kodnani
BJP president Amit Shah appeared as a witness for former minister Maya Kodnani in a case related to the 2002 Gujarat riots.(PTI file photo)

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah appeared before a special court in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad on Monday as the defence witness of Maya Kodnani, a former BJP minister and an accused in the 2002 Naroda Gam riot case.

The court summoned Shah to appear before it last week based on a request by Kodnani, who has been sentenced to life imprisonment in another riot case in Naroda Patiya.

Kodnani, a qualified gynaecologist who was the women and child welfare minister in the then Narendra Modi government in Gujarat, has been accused of inciting violence and leading the mob that killed 11 people at Naroda Gam area in Ahmedabad, which is one of the nine major communal riots cases in 2002.

She first requested the court to summon Shah and 13 others in her defence in April this year.

By summoning Shah and others, including her nursing home and Sola civil hospital staff, Kodnani will attempt to prove she was present at spots such as the Gujarat assembly, civil hospital, her home, and other places, but not Naroda Gam on February 28, 2002.

The riots broke out a day after the S6 coach of Sabarmati Express, which was carrying karsevaks returning from Ayodhya, was set ablaze at the Godhra railway station.

According to the application, by summoning Shah Kodnani wants to prove that she first met the then Sarkhej MLA in the assembly and then again at the Sola Civil Hospital, where the bodies of the karsevaks were brought after the riots broke out.

Kodnani has already been convicted and sentenced to 28 years in jail in the Naroda Patiya case in which 97 people were massacred. She has been out on bail on health grounds since 2014.

First Published: Sep 18, 2017 10:46 IST