Turmoil In State Sangh Parivar
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government’s clearance on Monday of the file put forth by the special investigations team that recommended death penalty for former minister Maya Kodnani, instead of a life term, in the Naroda Patia massacre of 2002 has brought about turmoil in the entire Sangh Parivar in Gujarat. The file had been submitted to the legal department in September 2012 and the timing is most discussed.
In an interview to BBC on January 28 this year, BJP president Rajnath Singh had said that Maya Kodnani is innocent and the party will fully support her in the legal battle. But the move on Monday against Kodnani is now being seen with suspicion by even Parivar insiders because Kodnani’s loyalties lie with L K Advani.
Kodnani’s parents, who have a strong Parivar background, had met RSS supremo Mohan Bhagwat in Ahmedabad last fortnight and requested him to use his good offices to help Kodnani. Many local RSS stalwarts had supported the impassioned plea from the family.
The timing of the clearance of the file is important as it comes seven months after the SIT submitted the report and deflects attention from Zakia Jafri protest petition against chief minister Narendra Modi with thousands of pages of wireless messages and call data record as evidence that Modi government knew about the violence in advance. Also, it comes on the heels of a section of the BJP and NDA favouring Advani as PM.
The change in government’s stance is stark. In 2009, when Kodnani was granted bail and SIT wanted bail cancellation, the Modi government replied to SIT that Maya is innocent and denied permission. Even during trial, Kodnani was not arrested.
Kodnani was sentenced to 28 years in jail August 2012 with 30 others for their role in the Naroda Patiya massacre. Kodnani, a three-time Naroda MLA, was identified in the court by 11 survivors as a mob leader.
Kodnani, a gynaecologist inducted as minister of state for women and child development by Modi in 2007, is the first former minister to be found guilty in any case relating to the riots.
VHP opposes move
Ahmedabad: The VHP leadership in Gujarat is up in arms against the state government’s decision to seek death penalty for former state minister Maya Kodnani and nine others in the 2002 Naroda Patia massacre case.
Kodnani seeks suspension of sentence
Former minister and a convict in the Naroda Patia massacre case, Maya Kodnani has requested the Gujarat high court to suspend the sentence against her and to release her on bail till her appeal against the conviction is decided.
Special judge Jyotsna Yagnik sentenced her to 28-year imprisonment after holding her guilty of participation in the killing of 97 people on February 28, 2002. The court held that she was the kingpin of the massacre and had incited the mob to resort to violence. She was sentenced on August 31 last year.
Kodnani has sought suspension of her sentence mainly on the ground that her appeal against conviction is not likely to be heard soon. Moreover, she has also contended that her appeal has good merit and there is likelihood of her succeeding in it. She has stated in her petition that the lower court had not evaluated evidence in proper manner and ignored constant improvisation on part of witnesses. She has also questioned the lower court’s decision to admit the electronic evidence in form of the sting operation, which contains extra-judicial confessions of Kodnani’s co-accused like Babu Bajrangi and Suresh Langdo.
Demanding bail, Kodnani has contended that she has deep roots in society and is not likely to abscond. TNN
Sanction to SIT a clever ploy: Activist
S ocial activist Cedric Prakash has dubbed the sanctio n granted by the state government to the SIT for seeking harsher punishment for Maya Kodnani and others in Naroda Patia case as “a very clever ploy to defocus from more important issues”. “The ruse now is to deflect from the protest petition filed by Zakia Jafri, which definitely names people and the events during the carnage,” he stated, adding that the state government had in fact promoted Kodnani to the ministry even after knowing her role in the massacre. TNN
- Naroda Patiya case: SIT to seek death for Kodnani, others (ibnlive.in.com)
- Gujarat government to seek death penalty for Kodnani, Bajrangi (thehindu.com)
- Glaring Lies of Glorious Gujarat: Exposing Narendra Modi and His Claims (kractivist.wordpress.com)
- PRESS RELEASE- Gujarat- Mrs Zakia Jafri files her Protest Petition (kractivist.wordpress.com)
- #India – Gujarat riots were not spontaneous and sudden Mr Narendra Modi (kractivist.wordpress.com)