2002 Gujarat Riots: State’s job to repair masjids, Centre tells Supreme Court

The case will be heard next on August 19.

Written by Utkarsh Anand | New Delhi | Updated: August 5, 2015 8:15 am
Narendra Modi, 2002 Gujarat Riots, Gujarat Riots, 2002 Godhra Riots, Godhra Riots damage, Godhra Riots masjids damage, masjids repairing, bjp government, gujarat govt, gujarat masjids repair, Supreme court, gujarat news, india news, nation news In its earlier hearings, the apex court gave an option to the Gujarat government for formulating a scheme for repairing religious places damaged during the riots.

When Narendra Modi was the chief minister of Gujarat, the state government had appealed against a high court order, directing it to repair and restore mosques, dargahs and other religious sites damaged in the 2002 post-Godhra riots.

Now, when he is the Prime Minister, the central government has told the Supreme Court that it has no obligation regarding restoration of religious places damaged in the communal riots and that the accountability has to be fixed with the state government. In its first affidavit into the matter, the Centre has said: “It is primarily the responsibility of the state government to maintain law and order in the state and to provide security, relief, rehabilitation and to compensate riot victims.”

Putting the onus on the Gujarat government, the Ministry of Home Affairs has said that the ‘public order’ and ‘police’ are state subjects and hence the state government was answerable to the queries of the top court regarding repairs and restoration of mosques, dargahs, graveyards, khankahs and other religious sites. “The central government, however, has provided ex-gratia to the victims of Gujarat riots in cases of death, injury and damages to residential and uninsured commercial properties, on the pattern of the package announced for the victims of anti-Sikh riots of 1984,” it stated.

The Home Ministry added that the report of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on the post-Godhra riots was forwarded to the Gujarat Chief Secretary for taking necessary action after placing it in the state legislature. “Hence, the main contesting respondent is the state of Gujarat,” it said.

The affidavit has been filed by the Ministry in the appeal by Gujarat government against the 2012 High Court order, directing it to repair religious places damaged in the post-Godhra riots. While pulling up the state government for its “inaction and negligence” during the riots, the high court had also ordered compensation for over 500 places of worships in the state on a PIL by Islamic Relief Committee of Gujarat, an NGO.

After the high court had criticised the state government for not tabling the NHRC report within six months of it being prepared, the 2002-03 report was tabled in Gujarat assembly in March 2012, nearly 10 years after the subsequent riots. In its report, the NHRC had censured the state.

In its earlier hearings, the apex court gave an option to the Gujarat government for formulating a scheme for repairing religious places damaged during the riots on the lines of its earlier order where it had asked the Odisha government to formulate a scheme for repairing churches damaged during the 2009 Kandhamal riots.
The  case will be heard next on August 19.

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  1. S
    Saradha Sankar
    Aug 5, 2015 at 9:03 am
    The govt should be secular as per our consution.Hence the govt should not spend its resources on any place of worship.The respective community should raise resources and renovate. The govt should also not have jurisdiction over any place of worship except it can make rules how they need to be administered.I also see no contradiction in the centre's stand.The govt has been always erting about federal structure and once again the govt has proved that it is consistent in its stand
    1. Z
      Aug 5, 2015 at 9:27 pm
      Repair the mosques and repair all the temples as well. They all come under national treasures. Several of them were destro not just recently even 1000 years ago. If the government does not have the money, have a fund raiser. Ask the rich people to contribute. India's politicians of every party are immature. They come to the streets and agitate (like Sonia and Rahul are doing now) and destabilize the country and ordinary people get affected.
      1. A
        An Idian
        Aug 6, 2015 at 10:25 am
        jo kabhi mulzim the aaj wahi munsif bane baithe hai, is desh me ab insaaf kaun karega.
        1. P
          Premjoy Babu
          Aug 5, 2015 at 10:13 am
          Responsibility should be fixed on the state Govt. for not undertaking tepair to the damages caused to the religious places in the post Godhra riots.The Gujarat Govt. should have carried out the tepair works by formulating a scheme in the line as the Odisha Govt. did as per the directive of the Court.So the onus on the state Govt. � on the central Govt. as it is s state subject & the state Govt. shoulf spare no time to do the needful.