The Supreme Court on Thursday restored the right of complainant and survivor Zakia Jafri to access all documents related to the SIT investigation that were submitted to the Supreme Court between May 2010 and July-August 2011 to enable her to file her protest petition against the SIT's closure report exonerating Chief Minister Narendra Modi and 61 others.
A three-Judge Bench of Justices P. Sathasivam, Aftab Alam and Ranjana Desai directed the trial court in Ahmedabad to supply her these documents. The Bench said Ms. Jaffry should file the protest petition in eight weeks from the date of receipt of such documents. The Bench clarified that the report shall be supplied without the comments of the SIT chief R.K. Raghavan. The bench quashed the orders passed by the magistrate rejecting the documents and rejecting her right to file the protest petition.
The Bench said the statements would have no legal effect and such statements should be treated as Section 161 Cr.P.C. statements. The Bench also clarified that the said statements recorded in the enquiry or further investigation should only be used for the purpose of taking a decision on the closure report in the present case and should not be used for any other purpose. It further said the order would be confined to the facts and circumstances of the present case and would not be treated as a precedent.
Initially Ms. Jafri had filed a complaint in June 2006 that Mr. Modi and 61 others had orchestrated the 2002 riots. In September 2011, the Supreme Court had directed that the matter be placed for consideration before a Magistrate under Section 173(2) and all documents related to the investigation be provided to the complainant before a decision was taken on the closure report. However, after the magistrate denied the documents, she moved the Supreme Court for relief. The Bench passed the order after hearing Counsel Kamini Jaiswal and Sanjay Parikh and amicus curiae Raju Ramachandran, who endorsed the submission of Ms. Jaiswal that the complainant was entitled to the documents which she had sought