As Ahmedabad's Metropolitan Magistrate accepted the closure report submitted by the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team in the Gulberg Society massacre case in Gujarat, it is being widely claimed that the Supreme Court has given Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi a ‘clean chit’ (a term with no legal meaning) in the 2002 Gujarat riots. Rajnath Singh has made the same claim in his interview. (“We will instil confidence in minorities,” May 4). This is very misleading. The Supreme Court did not express any opinion on the SIT report, but merely forwarded it to the trial court for further action. Besides, being sceptical about the conclusions arrived at by the SIT chief, R.K. Raghavan, that there is no ‘prosecutable evidence’ against Mr. Modi, the Supreme Court asked the amicus curiae to prepare an independent report, and his conclusions are reported to be opposed to those of Mr. Raghavan. Mere acceptance by the trial court of the closure report does not mean exoneration or proof of innocence of the accused persons who have not been charge-sheeted or tried in a court, and the whole matter is now before the Gujarat High Court on appeal. Besides, the SIT is yet to submit its report on other cases such as the Naroda Patiya massacre in which complaints have been lodged against Mr. Modi and others. In view of these facts, the BJP and a section of the media giving wide publicity to the claim that Mr. Modi was given a ‘clean chit’ by the Supreme Court, is misleading.

G. Radhakrishman,


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