Zaheera Shaikh, the key witness in the Best Bakery case who turned hostile in court, is now in Mumbai with her family under the protection of the NGO, Citizens for Justice and Peace. She has now come out into the open saying she was threatened by BJP MLA Madhu Srivastava and his cousin, Congress corporator, Chandrakant Srivastava alias Bhattu, both accused in the case. Priyanka Kakodkar met Zaheera. Excerpts:
When did the threats begin?
The threats started after we received the court summons in May. We thought the case would be tried in Ahmedabad or Delhi. But after the summons from the Vadodara court, Bhattu and Madhu Srivastava contacted Lal Mohammad, a scrap dealer in our basti, and started threatening us through him. My brother Nafitullah was told we would be killed if we told the court what had happened. I did not meet either Bhattu or Madhu Srivastava till the day of my court hearing on May 17. On that day, Bhattu came up to me inside the court and said "Zabaan palat de nahin to accha nahin hoga" (Change your testimony or it won't be good for you).