Mrs Zakia Jafri files her Protest Petition
A cold-blooded and clear-cut conspiracy to manipulate the tragic Godhra incident — from the moment of the terrible news — was planned and executed by Chief Minister Mr Narendra Modi (Accused no 1), in close consultation, especially with then Health Minister Mr Ashok Bhatt (accused no. 2) , Urban development minister, IK Jadeja (accused no 3) and other co-accused cabinet colleagues and especially VHP leader Mr Jaydeep Patel (accused no 21), with whom the CM was first in touch with soon after the tragic Godhra incident. This was aimed at ensuring that the tragedy at Godhra becomes ready fuel for the meticulously planned massacre of innocent Muslims all over Gujarat.
Mrs Zakia Ahsan Jafri today filed her Protest Petition praying for the rejection in toto of the SIT final report dated 8.2.2012, making a cogent case for the charge-sheeting of all 59 accused listed in her complaint dated 8.6.2006, beginning with Mr. Modi the chief minister of Gujarat.
The protest petition that runs into 514 pages also has three volumes of annexures and ten CDs. The Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) with its entire legal team has assisted in this painstaking and voluminous exercise.
The Petitioner strongly argues that the Supreme Court appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) had adequate documents and statements to come to a prima facie finding against all the accused. SIT, however decided to cover up the crimes and has gone out of its way to misguide the Court and give a clean chit to the accused.
Phone call records show Mr Modi (accused no 1, A-1) to have been in close touch with Mr Jaideep Patel (A-21) immediately after information of the Godhra tragedy comes in, even before he meets home department officials and ministers. Thereafter, there is a hasty and publicly conducted post-mortem at Godhra, out in the public against all law and procedure while a crowd of VHP workers was present. Mr Modi is present while this happens.
Thereafter, while passions are being cynically stoked, another sinister decision to hand over the dead bodies of Godhra victims to VHP strongman Mr Jaideep Patel (A-21) is taken at a mini-cabinet meeting presided by Mr Modi in Godhra, at which co-accused ministers are physically present. Mr Jaideep Patel too is present at the meeting. Then Godhra district magistrate, Mrs Jayanti Ravi has clearly stated that Mr Jaideep Patel was present at the meeting.
The Protest Petition goes into great detail, relying on documents from the investigation papers, on how the administration and police were deliberately paralysed and neutralised by the conspiracy hatched by Mr Modi, Co-accused, then Gujarat DGP Mr K Chakravari (A-25), then police commissioner, Ahmedabad, PC Pande (A-29), then additional chief secretary, home, Mr Ashok Narayan (A-28) and other key members of the bureaucracy and police who connived as co conspirators in the conspiracy.
Key field reports from the SIB (state intelligence bureau) from all districts were given to the SIT by January 2010, i.e., full three and a half months before the SIT submitted its first investigation report to the Supreme Court on 12.5.2010. These reports reveal a grim ground level reality: gross provocations and bloodthirsty slogans by VHP workers from 4 p.m. onwards on the afternoon of 27.2.2002 (“Khoon ka badla khoon se lenge”, blood for blood) while Mr Modi had still not left for Godhra.
Phone records of the chief minister’s office (CMO) reveal that he went to the airport to catch a helicopter for Godhra via Meghaninagar where the massacre at Gulberg society the next day was organized. Phone records of the CMO also show that after landing in Ahmedabad from Vadodara by aircraft (where he had travelled by road from Godhra on his return journey) too, Mr Modi and officials of the CMO who accompanied him are located at Meghaninagar late evening (mobile phone call records).
Just a week before the Godhra incident, on 22.2.2002, Mr Modi had won in the Rajkot bye-election by a slender margin (a few thousand votes). The glory of his victory had been dimmed with minority votes going heavily against him. Former CPI leader and later Parliamentarian from the Congress, Ahsan Jafri had been an active campaigner against Mr Modi in the bye-election lived in Gulberg Society, in Meghaninagar.
In a sinister furtherance of the conspiracy, the late night meeting at Mr Modi’s residence effectively neutralised the police and administration from doing its constitutional duty. The Protest Petition states that the credibility of the evidence related to the critical 27.2.2002 meeting must be tested during trial and that it was not the job of the investigating agency to pre-judge the issue, acting like a court overstepping its jurisdiction to protect and save powerful accused.
Evidence from Police Control Room (PCR) records submitted by Mr. PC Pande to the SIT after 15.3.2011 reveal cynical and cold-blooded mobilization of RSS workers and VHP men at the Sola Civil hospital from 4 a.m. onwards on 28.2.2002 in aggressive anticipation for the arrival of the dead bodies. Repeated PCR messages, that the home department under Mr. Modi (A-1, who held the home portfolio) and Mr PC Pande (A-21) were trying to conceal, show that both in Ahmedabad and in several locations all over Gujarat crowds were mobilized to aggressively parade bodies with bloodthirsty sloganeering, inciting mobs to attack innocent Muslims.
The then joint police commissioner, Ahmedabad, Mr Shivanand Jha, also an accused in the complaint (A-38), was jurisdictionally in charge of Sola Civil Hospital in Zone 1. As the messages extracted below show, repeated PCR messages desperately ask for bandobast; they speak of the staff and doctors of the hospital being under threat; of a 5,000-6,000 strong mob accompanying the bodies and finally one message also says that “riots have broken out.”
Yet Mr Modi, the entire Home department and the accused under him and individuals accused including Mr Chakravarti (A-25) and Mr PC Pande (A-29) in collaboration with the SIT have strived hard to conceal this evidence. While such aggressive funeral processions were allowed in Ahmedabad, an equally explosive situation prevailed simultaneously in Khedbrahma, Vadodara, Modasa, Dahod, Anand etc. A cynical government under Mr Modi and his co-accused conspirators has done their level best to conceal this evidence.
The PCR records — that the SIT was trying hard to conceal — also reveal that while the Ahmedabad police under Mr PC Pande and the home department under Mr Modi and then MOS, home Mr Gordhan Zadaphiya (A-5 ) had enough forces to escort a VHP leader known for his inciteful slogans, Acharya Giriraj Kishore, from the airport to the Sola Civil hospital to accompany the processionists, shouting filthy hate speeches and murderous slogans. But they did not have enough forces to send to Naroda Patiya where 96 persons were massacred in broad daylight (charge-sheet figures in the Naroda Patiya case, though more deaths have been recorded) and 69 persons at Gulberg society the same day and around the same time aggressive processions were being allowed. Mr Modi allowing and openly supporting the bandh and neutralising his administration, decided to give the RSS, VHP, BD mobs a free run of the Gujarat streets to massacre innocents.
As bad or worse were the provocations and hate speeches that were cynically allowed and encouraged by Mr. Modi and his administration. PCR messages of Ahmedabad and SIB messages from all over the state are testimony to this incendiary mobilisation.
Warnings Ignored (from SIB and PCR messages)
12:30 pm on the 27th February: An SIB officer through fax no 525 communicated to the headquarters that there were reports that some dead bodies would be brought to Kalupur Hospital station in Ahmedabad city. “So communal violence will occur in the city of Ahmedabad; so take preventive action.”
Another SIB message numbered as Out/184/02 again warned about communal incidents if bodies were brought to Ahmedabad. “Communal violence will occur in the city. So take preventive action.” The same message said that karsevaks had given explosive interviews to a TV station at Godhra and had threatened to unleash violence against the Muslims.
At 1:51 hours and again at 1:59 hours on the 28th February there were panic messages by wireless police vans positioned at Sola Hospital demanding immediate protection from Special Reserve Police platoons and the presence of DCP Zone 1.
Message at 2:44 hours on 28.2.2002: the motor cavalcade has reached Sola Civil Hospital.
Page No. 5790 of Annexure IV, File XIV reveals that at 04:00 am a mob comprising of 3,000 swayamsevaks, that is the members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), had already gathered at the Civil Sola Hospital.
At 7.14 a.m. the PCR van again informs the Police Control Room that a large mob had assembled at the hospital. (Page 5796 of Annexure IV, File XIV of the documents).
Again, another message three minutes later at 7:17 a.m. (Page 5797 of Annexure IV, File XIV of the documents) says that a mob of 500 people was holding up the traffic.
Ten bodies were taken to Ramol, an area near Naroda and a massive funeral rally of over 5,000-6,000 mourners took the bodies to Hatkeshwar crematorium in the afternoon.
At 11:55 am a PCR message is sent out saying that the Hindu mob had become violent and had set a vehicle on fire and was indulging in arson on the highway.
Message at 11.55 a.m. on 28.2.2002 (Page No. 6162 Annexure IV File XV) saying that “Sayyed Saheb, the Protocol Officer had informed Sola-1 that riots have started at Sola civil hospital at the High Court where the dead bodies were brought.”
Again, there is another message with no indication of time (Page No..6172 of 28.2.2002) that states that the officers and employees of the hospital had been surrounded by a 500 strong mob and they could not come out”. The message also made a demand for more security for the civil hospital at Sola.
Annexure IV File XIV- Message No. 5907 and 5925 at 11:58 a.m. on 28.2.2002 shows that when 10 dead bodies were taken from Ramol Jantanagar to the Hatkeshwar cremation ground, a crowd of 5,000-6,000 persons accompanied this procession.
On the morning of 28.2.2002, a SIB message (on page 258 of Annexure III File XIX, message No. Com/538/28/2/02) says that a funeral procession was allowed to take place at Khedbrahma, a town in Sabarkantha district. The message adds that soon after the funeral procession 2 Muslims on their way to Khedbrahma were stabbed and the situation had become very tense.
The subsequent message at page No. 262 of the same file (Annexure III File XIX) mentions that 150 Bajrang Dal workers were on their way from Ayodhya to Khedbrahma.
Another message at page 254 (Annexure III file XIX) – Com/574/2002 sent out at 15.32 p.m. on 28.2.2002 states that one more victim of the tragic train burning at Godhra, Babubhai Harjibhai Patel, resident at Vaghrol, Tal. Vadali in Sabarkantha was brought back and a funeral procession was organised in the town.
Warnings about the deliberate mobilization
At page 365 of Annexure III File XXI( D-166) message No. 73/02 dated 28.2.2002 sent by the ACP(Intelligence) Surat Region to State Intelligence Bureau Headquarters at Gandhinagar, says that between 9-10 a.m. on the morning of 28.2.2002, a meeting was held at Sardar Chowk in Vapi Town where Dinesh Kumar Behri of VHP and Acharya Brahmbatt of Bajrang Dal , Jawahar Desai of BJP and Vinod Chowdhary of RSS made inflammatory speeches regarding the incident at Godhra and called upon the Hindus to unite.
Another message at page 188 in Annexure III, File XVIII sent at 20:38 hours on the day of the Godhra train burning tragedy, i.e., 27.2.2002, mentions the following: “Dilip Trivedi, the General Secretary of VHP and Joint Secretary Dr. Jaideep Patel and Kaushik Mehta in a Joint Statement issued by them have declared that innocent Ram Bhatt’s have been attacked and hence Gujarat Bandh has been declared. They have also stated that the attack on the Ramsevaks returning from Ayodhya was pre-planned by the Muslims. Innocent ladies were molested and compartments were set on fire and Ramsevaks were burnt alive.”
The joint statement issued by the three senior-most office bearers of Gujarat VHP’s unit was clearly designed to stoke communal passion. A reasonable response would have been an immediate government clampdown on such public utterances and if required putting all these trouble makers under preventive detention. But no such action was taken. The VHP called for a bandh on the 28th February and the BJP, the ruling party, openly supported the bandh call. The State, instead of clamping down on the bandh call, gave the VHP leaders and its cadres a free reign and a license to kill.
At page 345, the message titled Vardhi No. 24 contained in Annexure III File XIX dated 27.2.2002 sent from D.O., Ahmedabad to the Intelligence Office at Virangam (Virangam is in Ahmedabad rural district) stated that 50 to 75 members of the VHP and Bajrang Dal had gathered at Virangam town chali and in the Golwada area and the situation was very tense.
Another message in the same file, i.e., Annexure III, File XVIII (D-160) at Page No. 19 Message No. 531 ifrom SIB Police to KR Singh at 1810 hours on 27.2.2002 said that, “on 27.2.2002 at 4.30 p.m. when the train arrived at the Ahmedabad Railway station, the kar sevaks were armed with ‘dandas’ and shouting murderous slogans ‘khoon ka badla khoon’ and ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’.”
Fax Mes. D-1/ HA/ Jaher Sabha/ Junagadh/ 311/02 dated.27.2.02 at10.12 pm sent by PI, CID, Int. Bhavnagar to IG, Guj. State IB, Gandhi Nagar said that Sadhu Samaj president Gopalnandji gave an agitated speech at Junagadh Kadva chowk, on dt.27.2.02 between19.30 to 21.00 hrs. The message then goes on to name specific local VHP leaders and says that they expressed their condolences to Kar Sevaks and then delivered hate speeches and urged all Hindus to unite and told the audience to chop the hands and legs of our enemies. They said in their speech that the incident that occurred at Godhra in the morning at 7.30a.m., yet there was no reaction from the Hindus which was very unfortunate. “Muslims who live in India with sincerity and patriotism, we don’t have any agitation against them. But we have objections against those who lived in India and favour Pakistan and carried out activities against the country. Anti- national activities are being done in Madrasas. We have objection against it. We do not have any kind of objection against spiritual religious education to the children. Pooja prathna at the temple and pray in the Masjid but Pakistan Zindabad is not right. Above mention ideas were expressed by them.”
Fax Mes. Com/HM/550/ 02 Dt.27.2.02 23:59 Out No.398 from ACP, Int. G’nagar Region to IG, Guj. State IB, Gandhi Nagar says that 50 Karsevaks travelling by a special bus from Ahmedabad reached Modasa centre in village Vadagam at Taluka Dhansura at around 18:30 pm on 27.2.02. “They were received by a mob of 500 people and these kar sevaks addressed the mob and told the people how the compartment of Sabarmati Express was attacked. People present in the mob got excited and at 21:30 p.m. people from around the village gathered and the mob swelled to a huge size. To maintain law and order the force was not sufficient and about 10 paan bidi shops were set on fire. Vehicles like Jeep, Maruti and Ambassador were set on fire. Vehicles and shops seem to belong to Muslims. One Yasinbhai Multani’s shop at Kalol center TaKadi, Bavlu PS village Kalyanpur was burnt down by the mob”.
Throughout February 28, 2002 while fires were set all over Ahmedabad city, PCR records show that repeated calls from different areas to the Fire Brigade drew went answered.
Table of Phone Records
|Call Type||Cell-No (Name)||Duration Secs||Date-Time||Dialed / Received No – Name|
A P Patel
(Accused No 1, Mr Modi)
Mr Jaideep Patel VHP General Secretary
(Accused No 21)
A P Patel
(Accused No 1, Mr Modi)
Mr Jaideep Patel VHP General Secretary
(Accused No 21)
The Protest Petition prays for the charge sheeting of all the accused, a transfer of the further investigation to an independent agency and an admitting of the Petition.
(Trustees, Citizens for Justice and Peace)
I.M. Kadri Taizoon Khorakiwala Nandan Maluste
Cyrus Guzder Arvind Krishnaswamy Javed Akhtar
Alyque Padamsee Anil Dharker Ghulam Peshimam
Rahul Bose Javed Anand Teesta Setalvad
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