Jhadaphia shows up before SIT for 5th time

October 23, 2010 12:00 am | Updated October 26, 2016 03:29 pm IST - GANDHINAGAR:

The former Gujarat Minister, Gordhan Jhadaphia, on Friday appeared before the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team.

This is the fifth time he has responded to SIT summons for questioning on his role during the 2002 communal riots which occurred when he was junior Home Minister under Narendra Modi.

Mr. Jhadaphia has since parted company with the BJP and formed his own Mahagujarat Janata Party, following differences over Chief Minister Modi's style of functioning.

He was summoned more than a fortnight ago but he sought time to appear before the SIT in view of the local self-government elections, which concluded on Thursday.

Mr. Jhadaphia's name figured as one of the 63 accused, including Mr. Modi, in the petition filed by Zakia Jaffrey, wife of the former Congress MP, Ehsan Jaffrey, who was among the 69 killed in the Gulberg Society massacre in Ahmedabad.

He was also recently summoned by the G. T. Nanavati-Akshay Mehta judicial commission, probing the Godhra train carnage and the communal riots that followed, for in-camera questioning.

But the move was challenged in the Gujarat High Court by the Jan Sangharsh Manch, which represented the riot victims.

During his earlier appearances, Mr. Jhadaphia was believed to have told the SIT that he had very little say in the happenings during the riots, and police deployment and related issues were handled directly by the Chief Minister, who held the Home portfolio.

He was bypassed by a few seniors in the Modi Cabinet and they got themselves posted in police control and other crucial positions in dealing with the riot situation, Mr. Jhadaphia said.

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