Manas Dasgupta

Manch against delinking train carnage from riots

  • Summon accused for cross-examination: Manch
  • Speculation about interim report premature: panel

    AHMEDABAD: The G.T. Nanavati and K.G. Shah judicial commission will consider submitting an interim report on the Godhra train carnage only if there is "consensus" among all parties. It conveyed this to Jansangharsha Manch advocate Mukul Sinha, who is representing the 2002 communal riot victims, here on Wednesday.

    Dr. Sinha submitted an application raising objections to any move to split the train carnage and post-Godhra riots or submit an interim report.

    The Manch said the train carnage and post-Godhra riots were inter-connected and any interim report without inquiring into the role of the Chief Minister and some other Ministers in the train carnage would give "a complete one-sided" version about the events.

    "Polarise voters"

    Pointing out that Gujarat Assembly elections were due by the year-end, the Manch said an interim report just about the train carnage could once again polarise voters communally.

    The Manch also wanted the commission to summon for cross-examination the accused who, the government pleader claimed, had given "confessional statements."

    After coming to a tentative conclusion, the panel should issue notices to such accused, if required on grounds of facts and circumstances.

    Panel's assurance

    The commission told Dr. Sinha that speculation about the interim report was premature.

    Any decision on the issue would be taken only after it examined all evidence and in "consultation" with all parties concerned if there was consensus.

    Dr. Sinha later told mediapersons that the Manch would continue to oppose any interim report and delinking the train carnage from the post-Godhra violence. The commission would be in a position to submit an interim report if it depended on "consensus," he said.

    Basic amenities

    In another application, Dr. Sinha requested the commission to issue directives to the State Government for providing basic amenities to the internally displaced, riot-affected persons still living in makeshift relief camps.

    He submitted a copy of the report by the "Antarik Visthapit Hak Rakshak Samiti," which said even after five years of the riots, many riot-affected persons were not rehabilitated properly.

    Until they were rehabilitated, basic amenities should be provided in the camps.

    The commission will meet again on April 4.