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'The Truth About The Godhra SIT Report'

Tehelka magazine claims to have dug up the 600-page Godhra SIT report, including Modi’s deposition, to assert that the SIT report "reveals a shameful cover-up":

ON 3 DECEMBER 2010, a leading national daily ran a frontpage story headlined ‘SIT clears Narendra Modi of willfully allowing post- Godhra riots.’ News channels leaped at the story. ‘SIT gives Modi a clean chit’ flashed in bold letters across television screens. The newspaper report that was attributed to anonymous sources and had little more information than the sensational caption was expanded into a certificate of innocence for Modi.

Within hours, a beguiling charade of Modi’s righteousness was constructed. While the Special Investigation Team (SIT), which had done the probe, chose to remain quiet as it was answerable only to the Supreme Court, BJP spokespersons popped up on news channels hailing the imaginary ‘clean-chit’ as a political triumph. An exuberant LK Advani called it “the most heartening news I have read in a long, long time”. Praising Modi’s personality and his style of governance, Advani wrote in his blog: “In my 60 years of political life I have not known any colleague of mine so consistently, so sustainedly and so viciously maligned by opponents as Narendra Modi.”

The BJP patriarch wrapped up his eulogy on Modi with the following remark: “Several papers have reported that the SIT has found no evidence to substantiate the charge and has exonerated the Gujarat chief minister. The country is eagerly awaiting the full text of the SIT report to the Supreme Court.”

Well, the wait is over. TEHELKA has scooped the sensational 600-page inquiry report into Modi’s alleged role in the 2002 massacre. The content is shocking and will come as a serious blow to the carefully cultivated image of Modi as an able administrator and a man of good governance. For eight years, riot victims and human rights groups have cried hoarse about the deliberate miscarriage of justice in Gujarat. About how the police and State machinery had either ignored or abetted rioters and created the space for massacres to happen; about how some ruling party politicians had goaded the public mood to new danger levels; about the State’s blatant and continuing prejudice against the victims; about public prosecutors who were subverting justice in the courts by helping the accused instead of nailing their guilt.

Read on at Tehelka

The magazine also provides Narendra Modi's deposition before the SIT:

As the interrogation progressed, Modi seems to have pulled every trick in the book: selective facts, evasion, amnesia, outright lies and rhetoric.

“Please refer to your interview given to Sudhir Choudhary of Zee TV on 1 March, 2002. In this interview you have stated that ‘Kriya pratikriya ki chain chal rahi hai. Hum chahte hain kina kriya ho aur na pratikriya (This is a chain of actions and reactions. We want both action and reaction to stop)’. You also reportedly stated in the said interview that ‘the Godhra incident caused a big shock in India as well as abroad. These people from the Godhra area have criminal tendencies and had earlier killed lady teachers also and now they have committed this heinous crime, for which the reaction is being felt.’ Please explain,” asked Malhotra.

Modi evaded a direct reply. “Those who have read the history of Gujarat would definitely be aware that communal violence in Gujarat has a very long history. Since long and even before my birth, Gujarat has witnessed a series of incidents of such communal violence. As per available history, from 1714 AD to now, thousands of incidents of communal violence have been recorded in Gujarat.”

He had still not answered the question. “As far as the Zee TV interview of 1 March 2002 is concerned, today, after a period of eight years, I do not recollect the exact words. But I had always appealed only and only for peace. I had tried to convey to the people to shun violence in straight and simple language.”

It is difficult to spot the Modi of the election rally in these answers. On 4 December 2007, months after the fake encounter of Sohrabuddin Sheikh, Modi had asked a heaving crowd — “What should I have done with Sohrabuddin?” The exhilarated crowd had shouted back: “Kill him, kill him.” Modi had then jeered: “Should my police seek Sonia Gandhi’s permission for that?”

But that Modi was now in complete abeyance.

“Did you make a statement to the media about the post-Godhra riots by citing Newton’s law that every action has equal and opposite reaction?” asked Malhotra.

“The Times of India published a news item about this. The truth is nobody from Times of India had met me,” Modi answered. “The falsehood of my so-called action-reaction theory is evident from this fact. The state government issued a denial about me having given any interview. This was belatedly published in a remote corner of the newspaper.”

At this point, Modi says, “There is a saying in Gujarati — Ver thi ver same nahi. It has been my constant opinion that violence cannot be a reply to violence. I had only appealed for peace. I had not and would never justify any action or reaction by a mob against innocents.”

Read on here

 

 

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