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Tuesday, Oct 26, 2021
Outlook.com

The Cop With The Key

Under-arrest IPS man Bhatt may still script riots case endgame

The Cop With The Key
PTI
The Cop With The Key
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

When Sanjiv Bhatt was arrested on September 30, it was hardly as if the IITian IPS officer-turned-nemesis of CM Narendra Modi was caught unawares. He had been expecting the wrath of the administration to turn on him for long, right from November ’09 when he first spoke out on Modi’s complicity in the 2002 carnage. Since then, his depositions and affidavits at the SC-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT), the Nanavati-Shah Commission and his latest writ petition in the SC, had made him a marked man. The writ alleged a nexus between Modi’s administration, lawyers for the accused and political entities to subvert justice in the riots cases.

The Gujarat government—Modi is also home minister—last year transferred Bhatt to the rather insignificant police training college in Junagadh, then scaled down his security cover earlier this year, suspended him two months back for being absent from work (the suspension order was served three days after Bhatt approached the SC), chargesheeted him on September 18 and finally arrested him. As the drama over his bail played out—police filed for his custody in a sessions court while a magistrate heard his bail plea—his Ahmedabad house was searched, so was his mother’s residence and attempts were made to access his bank lockers.

Wife Shweta dashed off letters to the Gujarat DGP Chittaranjan Singh pointing out that the Ahmedabad Crime Branch was known for their ‘fake encounters’, and to Union home minister P. Chidambaram saying that she feared a “danger to Bhatt’s life from a vindictive administration”. The MHA has since asked the Modi government to provide security to Bhatt and family, but it also went a step further and decided to carry out an independent assessment too. “This is the...

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