Advocate Ajay Choksi was appointed as special public prosecutor in the case against activist Teesta Setalvad, her husband Javed Anand and three others, on Tuesday. The development comes after advocate Manisha Lavkumar withdrew herself from the case as Public Prosecutor, following allegations of being related to the man allegedly behind the case.
On the other hand, the city civil and sessions court, where the case is being heard, adjourned the hearing of anticipatory bail of Setalvad and others till March 4. The five persons are accused of collecting funds worth Rs 1.51 crore as donation to convert Gulberg Society into the “Museum of Resistance”, but allegedly using the money for personal purposes.
The Ahmedabad Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) had registered an FIR against the five, following the complaint lodged by Feroz Saeedkhan Pathan, who lived in the society during the 2002 riots. The society saw 69 persons being burnt alive by the mob during the riots.
The state government had appointed Manisha Lavkumar Shah as Special Public Prosecutor, but she withdrew herself from the case. The defence had alleged that she represented Raiskhan Pathan, who has lodged several cases against Setalvad and her NGO – Citizen for Justice and Peace – out of vengeance. It was alleged that Pathan was the brain behind the FIR.
The court also expressed its concern over rise in crimes in outer Delhi areas.