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Didn’t cite 2002 riots larger conspiracy while deposing in Gulberg case since only was witness: Zakia to SC

🔴 Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, who appeared for Jafri, told a bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar that being a prosecution witness, she had to confine her statements to what she knew about the particular case.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: December 9, 2021 7:29:30 am
Zakia Jafri, Congress MP Ahsan Jafri, 2002 post-Godhra riots, 2002 Godhra riots, Narendra Modi, Gujarat riots, supreme court, india news, current affairs, indian expressZakia is the wife of Ahsan Jafri, an ex-MP who was killed in the 2002 post-Godhra riots (File Photo)

Zakia Jafri, wife of late Congress MP Ahsan Jafri who was killed during the 2002 post-Godhra riots, on Wednesday told Supreme Court that she had not spoken about her allegations of a larger conspiracy behind the riots while deposing in the trial of the Gulberg Society killings case, as she was only a prosecution witness and not complainant in that case.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, who appeared for Jafri, told a bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar that being a prosecution witness, she had to confine her statements to what she knew about the particular case.

“She appeared as a prosecution witness in 2010…. She was not a complainant in the Gulberg trial and was required to give evidence only regarding what was needed to be proved…” Sibal said.

He added that Jafri could not have relied on what she had said in her own 2006 complaint, as that was not cited in the Gulberg Society chargesheet.

“She cannot rely on a document that was not cited in the chargesheet,” Sibal told the bench, also comprising Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and C T Ravikumar.

The bench is hearing Jafri’s appeal challenging the Gujarat High Court order upholding the decision of the Metropolitan Magistrate Court in, Ahmedabad, to accept the closure report filed by the SIT, which gave a clean chit to then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and others in riot-related cases despite its protest petition.

Sibal said he was not going into certain developments of February 27, 2002, as some of the facts are disputed, “but my contention that there was a larger conspiracy stands. This required an investigation…That would have proved many people were involved including bureaucrats.”

Sibal contended that the closure report is only an opinion and not acquittal. “Whether justice is done or not done will be tested by future generations,” Sibal said.

He also said stains on hand can never be erased by simply wishing them away.

He rejected the contention that former Gujarat ADGP R B Sreekumar had filed affidavits against the government since he was superseded and said it was the other way round. “Because he was filing…he was superseded and not otherwise…and now being harassed”.

Sibal had earlier argued that the bodies of those killed in the Godhra train fire were handed over to VHP functionaries to be taken to Ahmedabad.

This was denied by SIT counsel, senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, who said the bodies were only sent to Ahmedabad since that was the train’s last stop and VHP leaders accompanied because those who were killed were kar sevaks.

On Wednesday, Sibal said the SIT’s contention was contrary to records.

The arguments remained inconclusive and will continue on Thursday.

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