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Zaheera, BJP legislator under tax scanner

Income Tax department officials started searching Zaheera's bank accounts and conducted raids.

india Updated: Apr 22, 2006 22:48 IST

Income tax authorities on Saturday conducted searches at the residences of Zaheera Sheikh, a key witness in a case of communal violence in Gujarat, and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator Madhu Srivastava following a Supreme Court directive.

Income Tax department officials started searching Zaheera's bank accounts and conducted raids at the houses of Srivastav and his nephew in Vadodara, about 110 km from Ahmedabad.

While sentencing Zaheera to a year in prison last month on charges of lying under oath, the apex court had asked the tax authorities in Gujarat to search her assets.

Zaheera, the 20-year-old witness in the case known as Best Bakery, changed her statements during hearings in the sessions court in Vadodara and later when the case was transferred to a Mumbai court, allegedly at the instance of Srivastava to shield the accused.

Nine of those accused of setting the bakery on fire and killing 14 people on March 1, 2002, however, were convicted by a special court in Mumbai last month.

First Published: Apr 22, 2006 22:48 IST