Ending suspense over his appearance before the Supreme Court-appointed SIT probing the 2002 Gujarat riots, Chief Minister Narendra Modi has agreed to present himself before the panel on March 27.
“March 27 is the mutually agreed date on which Mr. Modi will appear before Special Investigation Team,” his advocate Mahesh Jethmalani told PTI.
However, Modi told SIT Chief R.K. Raghavan in a letter that since the hearing on the case is scheduled before the Supreme Court on April 5, it will be good if the apex court hears the matter first.
Mr. Modi pointed out to the SIT that since the matter, regarding which summons had been issued to him was pending before the Supreme Court, propriety demands the SC hears it first before he appears for SIT questioning, Jethmalani said.
He said the chief minister has also written that in case the SIT decides to question him on the mutually agreed date of March 27, he will appear before the panel.
However, SIT Chief R.K. Raghavan refused to comment on the date.
“It is a privilege communication between the SIT and the witness and I cannot comment on this,” he said.
Confusion prevailed over the appearance of Modi before the SIT with its chief saying he would appear on March 21. But Mr. Modi, in an open letter, claimed he was not summoned on that date.
SIT has summoned Modi to depose in connection with a complaint of Zakia Jaffery, widow of former Congress MP Eshan Jaffery, who was killed in Gulburg society riot case of 2002 along with 69 others.
Former BJP MLA Kalu Maliwad had approached the Supreme Court demanding that SIT should not be allowed to press the complaint of Zakia Jaffery.