BJP president Amit Shah’s statement defending former Gujarat minister Maya Kodnani and one of the key accused in 2002 Naroda Gam massacre is “not believable” and should not be considered, the Supreme Court-appointed SIT has told a special court hearing the case.
Earlier in September 2017, Shah had appeared before the court as a defence witness for Kodnani. She had requested the court to summon him to prove her claims that she was present in the Gujarat Assembly and not in at Naroda Gam on the day the riots broke out.
“Shah’s statement is unbelievable, as none of the other accused mentioned about her presence at the Sola Civil Hospital,” PTI quoted special Public Prosecutor Gaurang Vyas as saying.
During his appearance in the court as a witness, Shah had said that he had met Kodnani in the Assembly in Gandhinagar and later at the Sola Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad on the day 2002 riots broke out.
The Naroda Gam massacre case is one of the nine cases of communal violence that took place under Narendra Modi government in 2002, which were investigated by the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team.
At least 11 people from the Muslim community were killed and scores others injured in the Naroda Gam riots during a bandh called by Hindu outfits to protest Godhra train burning incident.
Kodnani is the main accused in the case. Besides rioting and murder, she had been charged with criminal conspiracy and attempt to murder in the case.
The former Gujarat minister was sentenced to 28 years in jail in the Naroda Patiya riots case. As many as 96 people, mostly Muslims, were killed in the riots. However, Kodnani was acquitted by the Gujarat High Court in April 2018.
(With inputs from agencies)