NATIONAL

Conditional bail for Kodnani

The former Gujarat Minister, Mayaben Kodnani, being escorted out of the Sabarmati Central Jail in Ahmedabad on Tuesday.

The former Gujarat Minister, Mayaben Kodnani, being escorted out of the Sabarmati Central Jail in Ahmedabad on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: AFP

Manas Dasgupta

AHMEDABAD: The former Gujarat Minister of State for Women’s Welfare, Mayaben Kodnani, and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader, Jaideep Patel, were granted conditional bail by the Ahmedabad Sessions Court on Tuesday.

The Additional Sessions Judge, C. H. Patel, granted them the bail on the conditions that they would co-operate in the investigation into the Naroda-Patiya and Naroda Gaam massacres of 2002, would not leave Gujarat without the court’s permission, would surrender their passports and would not try in any way to influence the witnesses.

Accused in the two incidents of massacre, Ms. Kodnani and Mr. Patel surrendered before the Special Investigation Team appointed by the Supreme Court on March 27 after the Gujarat High Court cancelled their anticipatory bail.

After spending about a fortnight in SIT custody, both were later sent to judicial custody and are since then behind bars.

Ms. Kodnani and Mr. Patel were accused of “instigating” violent mobs to attack minorities in the two localities on the outskirts of Ahmedabad while Ms. Kodnani was also alleged to have distributed arms to the mobs and carried some inflammable material in her car. The accused, however, have pleaded not guilty and had claimed that they were not present at the site of the incidents as alleged by some witnesses.

The court, however, granted them bail on the ground that some other accused in these cases as well as other incidents of massacre were granted bail.

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