SIT asked not to make public Modi's statement

August 19, 2010 07:24 pm | Updated November 28, 2021 09:29 pm IST - New Delhi

The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the R.K. Raghavan-headed Special Investigation Team (SIT) not to make public the statement given by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi during the course of investigation into Zakia Jaffry's complaint.

A Bench of Justices D.K. Jain, P. Sathasivam and Aftab Alam said, “We direct the SIT not to divulge any information collected during the course of investigation to anyone except the trial court and public prosecutor concerned. We direct that the statement shall not be supplied to the [Justice Nanavati] Commission.”

The order was passed after the SIT sought a clarification whether Mr. Modi's statement could be given to the Nanavati Commission, which is probing the 2002 riot cases. The Commission had sought the statement recorded by the SIT on March 27 and 28.

Mr. Raghavan submitted to the court that Y.C. Modi, IPS officer from the Assam cadre, had joined the SIT as a member and he requested the Union Home Secretary to spare the services of K. Venkatesan from Maharashtra. However, the Maharashtra government declined to accede to the request.

The Bench issued notice to the Maharashtra government seeking its response as to why the court should not direct it to relieve him.

The Bench made it clear that a copy of the SIT report on Ms. Jaffry's complaint would be given only to amicus curiae; in this case advocate Prashant Bhushan. It asked Mr. Bhushan not to make the report public.

Senior counsel Ram Jethmalani, appearing on behalf of one of the persons whose name figured in the list of 63 in Ms. Jaffry's complaint, submitted that his plea for recall of the April 27, 2009 order, asking the SIT to look into Ms. Jafry's complaint was still pending consideration.

Justice Jain told Mr. Jethmalani that the court would hear his plea after the SIT completed its probe and Mr. Bhushan gave his response to the report.

The date for further hearing has been listed for September 30.

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