Says she is disappointed but not disheartened with court’s rejection of Jafri’s petition

Social activist Teesta Setalvad, who backed the Zakia Jafri petition against the closure report of the Special Investigation Team that gave a clean chit to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the Gulberg Society massacre in Ahmedabad in 2002, on Sunday said an appeal would be filed in the higher court as the Ahmedabad magistrate court had rejected Ms. Jafri’s petition.

Speaking at a book launch here in the city, Ms. Setalvad said she was disappointed, but not disheartened with the verdict that was delivered earlier this week. She said the struggle for justice would continue at the higher courts. “There is a need to correct judicial wrongs and we hope we will succeed. We have very solid evidence — both written and oral — to prove our case,” she said.

Asked to comment on Mr. Modi’s blog, which was posted a day after the court’s verdict, where he had said he was “shaken to the core” with regard to the 2002 communal riots, Ms. Setalvad said the entire blog was about Mr. Modi himself.

Earlier, she spoke about Gujarat’s development model and said: “The model of development that is being sold comes at a cost and does not weigh the cost of displacement of the poor,” she said.

Ms. Setalvad said the country was currently in a state of political paralysis and confusion, and there was a need for mass education programmes on history and politics to counter the confusion.

The social activist, who also visited Muzaffarnagar recently, spoke about the deplorable conditions of the victims of the violence. She said the issue was being buried as more than three-fourth of the victims were from the minority communities.