Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s Gujarat unit had opposed the move of the State government to seek death penalty for former Minister Maya Kodnani and others in the 2002 post-Godhra riots case, its leader Pravin Togadia said on Wednesday.
“We had opposed the move of the State government to challenge the verdict of the trial court in Naroda Patiya riots, which sentenced Kodnani to life imprisonment and was to appeal for capital punishment,” Dr. Togadia told reporters in Nagpur.
Kodnani is innocent and was not present at the scene, he claimed.
Under attack from right wing forces, the Gujarat government on Tuesday kept on hold its decision to seek death penalty for Kodnani, Babu Bajrangi and eight others in the 2002 Naroda Patiya riots case, in which 96 people were killed.
Kodnani, who was earlier a Minister in the Narendra Modi government, was sentenced to 28 years in prison by a Special Court in August 2012, while Bajrang Dal activist Bajrangi was sentenced to jail for his entire life, while eight others were given 31 years’ jail term each in the same case.