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Continuing Violence

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Continuing Violence
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Crime Against Humanity  
Volume I An inquiry into the carnage in Gujarat 
List of Incidents and Evidence  
By Concerned Citizens Tribunal -Gujarat 2002

Incidents of Post-Godhra Violence

Continuing Violence

Even as the Tribunal was finalising its report, violence broke out in Mehsana dis- trict and fear and insecurity was again experienced by small clusters of the Muslim minority. Protection from the police had to be sought and the assailants were again mobs actively led by men who hold positions of power. During the gaurav yatra that CM Modi insisted on holding on July 12, 2002 despite advise to the contrary, terrified Muslims fled back to the then-functioning relief camps, scared of a repeat of the carnage. Violence and threats of violence have been a constant feature of Gujarat even after the carnage. What is truly shocking is the violence caused by calculated hate speech that leaders of these groups have been indulging in.

The period between mid-March and mid-May saw continued violence in Ahmedabad and other parts of Gujarat. More and more instances of indiscriminate police firing were reported, where victims were mainly the Muslim minority. It is imperative that the Gujarat police regularly make statistics available to members of the public. This is one way there will be accountability.

Phases of Violence

In the first phase of violence, from February 28 to around March 5, systematic, intensive and organised violence was directed against Muslims and their property. This phase was marked by the presence of large roving mobs, armed with swords, raising slogans like Jai Sri Ram and Jai Hanuman, and attacking Muslim houses and shops. Killing and maiming was brutal, burning of the dead left few remains. Sexual violence was calculatedly used.

The second phase of violence began on March 15, the day that the Shiladaan was held in Ayodhya. In Ahmedabad and Vadodara, Bharuch, Bhavnagar and Rajkot, processions and ramdhuns were organised on that day, violating prohibitory orders and leading to fresh escalation of violence. From our evidence recorded, in Vadodara, the violence first erupted in Machchipith, when the shobha yatra turned aggressive and violent, leading to stone throw- ing on both sides. It is significant that areas where residents had actively prevented vio- lence in the first phase (such as Fatehgunj) were targeted in this phase.

Towards the end of April (April 26-around May 5), Ahmedabad and Vadodara, including rural Vadodara, were affected by a third round of violence. From around the third week of April, there were rumours in the city that there would be violence after the Gujarat State Board Examinations. These rumours led to the build-up of considerable tension. While the ‘big attack’ that was being anticipated did not hap- pen, the tension that had built up manifested itself in a further round of violence, which began on April 27, in Vadodara. The later phases of violence, though less intensive than the first phase, were akin to a steady war of attrition.

During this period, in contrast to the first week of violence, Hindus in sensitive areas were ‘prepared’ for ‘retaliation’ by Muslims (aided, according to reports, by local Hindutva organisations, which distributed swords, guptis, etc.). This time, Muslims in some localities attempted to defend themselves, leading, with the prevailing build-up of tension, to street-level confrontations (stone throwing, etc.) in some areas. Evidence recorded by the Tribunal shows, that when Muslims, who had been denied police protection during the most vicious attacks on their lives and property, came out to defend themselves, they were picked up by the police and charged with a range of offences, including section 307 (attempt to murder). Over 500 innocent Muslim youth, our evidence shows, still languish in Gujarat’s lock-ups and jails and there have been no attempts by the state, through its public prosecutors, to get them released.

Gujarat Police has finally admitted that it killed more Muslims than Hindus in its ostensible attempts to stop what was clearly targeted Hindu violence against Mus- lims. Of the 184 people who died in police firing during the post-Godhra violence, 104 were Muslims, says a report drafted by Gujarat Police. This statistic substantiates the allegation of riot victims from virtually every part of the state that not only did the local police not do anything to stop the Hindu mobs; they actually turned their guns on the helpless Muslim victims.

At some places in the state though, this trend -of more Muslims falling to police bullets than Hindus -was reversed. In both Bhavnagar and Banaskantha districts, five Hindus died in police firing on rioters. No Muslim was killed in Banaskantha, only one died in Bhavnagar. Superintendents of police of both districts were removed from their posts. The numbers of Muslim and Hindu deaths in police firing, despite having been computed by the Gujarat government, have so far not been released. Coming out with the truth would only inflame the situation, it was feared.

As many as 218 persons died, more than 1,000 were injured and property valued at about Rs. 417 crore destroyed between April-June this year, in the sporadic incidents of communal violence in Gujarat which followed the Godhra train carnage, according to a reported statement made by union minister of state for home, ID Swami, in Parliament.

November 11/12, Mehsana, Kheda, Ahmedabad: At least six people were killed and several injured when violence broke out in Dasaj, Mehsana. A man was killed when a mob attacked the bus in which he was travelling on Mahudha-Dakod Road. Earlier in the day, two persons were stabbed to death at Mahudha village in Kheda district of central Gujarat.

Late into the night of November 12, Dasaj and surrounding villages of Mehrwada, Jaska and Kohda, which have barely 20-22 Muslim families each living within them after the carnage, were held to ransom by rampaging mobs egged on by minister for transport, Narayan Laloo Patel. Later, two people were killed after wild rumours were spread about a “Muslim” attack on revellers at Gogh Maharaj temple in Dasaj. Col- lector Amrut S Patel of Mehsana is a close relative of the aforementioned minister. Maharaj Amardas Bapu of Virpur Math, Palanpur, was heard making provocative speeches to incite the mobs to violence.

A crude bomb explosion claimed the life of a shopkeeper in Danilimda area of Ahmedabad.

November 8, Ahmedabad: Tension reigned in the Gomtipur, Shahpur and Damilimda areas of Ahmedabad after 16 persons were injured in Jamalpur. The po- lice arrested a significant number of persons from both the Hindu and Muslim com- munities. The fragile state of affairs was evident in the atmosphere prevalent in the town when an altercation began over a food bill at a roadside, eating joint in the Raikhad area and blew out of proportion to reach Jamalpur. In the ensuing violence, six people were seriously injured and five shops ransacked and set ablaze near Jamalpur Darwaza before additional police and paramilitary forces brought the situation under control. Just the day before (November 7), a private bus ran over 14-year-old Pankaj Ambalal Dabhi in Shahpur. Public outrage against the bus driver transformed into communal violence in different parts of the city, police said.

November 5, Ahmedabad: Police had to lob tear gas shells to quell stone pelting mobs as members of both communities fought a pitched battle after a quarrel. At least three persons were injured and half-a-dozen two-wheelers and three-wheelers were set on fire by the mob at Gomtipur near Sarangpur bridge in the western part of the city. Trouble erupted when a local Hindu youth, who was apparently drunk, went to the Muslim owner of a cycle-repair shop to rent a cycle. Since the youth owed the cycle-shop owner some money, the owner refused and asked him to first repay the debt. A heated argument ensued and both came to blows. The Hindu youth suffered a minor injury on his elbow, police said.

The youth’s family, who lived nearby, raised an alarm. Within minutes, people from both communities began pelting stones at each other. Three persons were injured in the 25-minute exchange. Once they reached the spot, police failed to control the mob frenzy. The rioting continued and people set fire to five two-wheelers and three-wheel- ers and a bakery in the presence of the police, a local youth, Anwarbhai Ansari, said. Finally, police brought the situation under control after lobbing 24 tear gas shells. More than 10 persons from both communities were rounded up.

October 21, Dangs, South Gujarat: Five tribal children, boarders at a school run by the Navjyot Social Service Society, were threatened and told “to decide whether they want to live as Hindus or die as Christians.” A senior BJP minister in the Narendra Modi government, Karsan Patel, warned Christians in the sensitive Dangs area “to behave with restraint.” The minister was camping in Dangs to ensure that the Ram Katha in his constituency was a success and “wants Christians to cooperate or face the consequences.” Patel is, ironically, the state minister handling the welfare of the so- cially and economically backward classes. Christian priests and nuns claimed that “tension was in the air” and that the minister had behaved extremely rudely at the end of the meeting. “He told us, ‘You tried to rake up Dangs and got international atten- tion. Did Godhra ever happen in Dangs? Has a single Christian died? Why do you people make a mountain of a molehill? And don’t dare talk to the English media,’” the priests and nuns said. The minister, however, denied this.

October 9, Chuda, Surendranagar: Around 30 people were injured in a group clash between Harijan and Satwara communities at Chuda in Surendranagar district. The groups attacked each other with sharp weapons and resorted to stone throwing and ransacking of shops. According to DSP, R Jotangiya, the trouble started over a petty fight between children of the two communities, which later intensified with the elders joining in. According to sources, about 14 people were detained for interroga- tion and most of them belonged to the Harijan community.

September 20, Vadodara, Ahmedabad: The death toll in two days’ violence in Vadodara rose to four with one more person succumbing to stab injuries in hospital. Of the four killed, two persons died in police firing. One person was stabbed to death and another stoned. Trouble started during the Ganesh Visarjan ceremony and clashes were reported from Fatehpura, Yuktepura, Machchipith and Raopura. Violence con- tinued throughout the night.

Meanwhile, in Ahmedabad, 13 persons, including 11 policemen, were injured after clashes between Shiv Sena and Congress workers on September 19, over the desecra- tion of a Ganesh idol. Shiv Sena and Congress workers hurled stones and soda bottles at each other and Ganesh processions were held up for more than three hours, DSP Natha Ghule said. Balu Borate, a Congress leader, has lodged a complaint lodged at Topkhana police station against Shiv Sena MLA Anil Rathod and seven others. Bo- rate alleged that the clashes started after Sena cadres threw stones and damaged the Ganesh statue at Neelkamal Mandal. Police registered a case of rioting against Rathod. Shiv Sena MLAs alleged that police had a nexus with the Congress and said his party workers were incapable of desecrating the statue, as they were “real Hindus”.

July 19, Viramgam, Ahmedabad: At least one person was killed and 12 injured when police opened fire to control communal violence at Viramgam town, in Ahmedabad rural district. At least eight of the injured sustained bullet wounds. Curfew was imposed in Viramgam, near Ahmedabad, when police fired bullets to disperse clashing groups after lobbing of tear gas shells failed to bring the situation under control.

July 18, Panchmahal: Two explosions, believed to have been caused by crude devices, rocked the rural areas of Panchmahal district, leaving two persons dead and at least a dozen injured, some of whom lost their eyes. According to superintendent of police Narsinh Komar, the first explosion occurred in Mehlol village, 15 km from Godhra town, at around 12.15 p.m., when a scooter parked in the village exploded and went up in flames. There were, however, no casualties.

The second explosion took place in the Suthar Falia of Dailol town, in which two people were killed. The dead were identified as Hiren Suthar and Jagdish Rathod.

July 16, Ahmedabad: The arrest of the ‘mahant’ of the Saryudasji temple, Shivramdasji Ramanandi, here on the eve of the Jagannath rath yatra, for allegedly possessing nine country-made pistols was described by a section of the sadhus and sants as a “conspiracy”. They threatened to “take to the streets” if suitable action was not taken against the police officials responsible. Taking up cudgels on behalf of the ‘mahant’ was his ‘guru’ and president of the Ramjanmabhoomi Nyas, Ramchandra Paramhans, who rushed here from Ayodhya. He presided over a meeting attended by 500 sadhus and sants from all over the state. The meeting adopted a resolution to launch an agitation if the government failed to do “justice” to the ‘mahant’. The agitation would be extended all over the country in support of the demand for suspension of the two police officials, who they said, were responsible for hatching a “conspiracy” against the ‘mahant’.

June 10, Ahmedabad: Violence that began in Juhapura area on the afternoon of June 9 (after the arrest of two alleged bootleggers involved in the recent riots), continued, leaving two dead and five injured. A 75-year-old autorickshaw driver was attacked by unidentified men with sharp-edged weapons, near Guptanagar. He died in hospital later. A 15-year-old boy, who lived in the Sama Park society in Juhapura, also died in police firing. A 26-year-old youth was also injured in police firing.

At about 11 a.m., mobs set on fire 12 houses and two shops in the Aravali society and Al Hamza society near Guptanagar slum colony that borders Juhapura. There was heavy brick-batting in the area and the mobs targeted police. Three persons, including one inspector, were injured. Vejalpur police arrested 17 persons in connec- tion with the violence.

June 7, Valol: Residents of this village were shocked when they woke up to the sight of a burning Tata Indica car with two persons inside. Villagers first spotted the burning white car at around 3.15 a.m. and one of them immediately called the police and fire brigade. Police reached the spot 15 minutes later and found two charred bodies inside the car. Police had still to identify the two persons and find out if the victims were burnt along with the car or their bodies were burnt after they were killed. Nothing was left of the car except for its soot-covered seat frames. The bodies were found on the rear seats, their trunk and lower limbs reduced to ashes and the upper part charred beyond recognition.

June 3, Bhavnagar: Police fired at least ten rounds and burst tear gas shells to disperse mobs indulging in arson and stone pelting in the Prabhutalav area of Bhavnagar city. However, no one was injured in the police action. Mobs belonging to two communities began pelting stones following a power failure in the area and also set a house on fire.

June 1, Vadodara: A Maulvi was stabbed in the city of Vadodara. May 30, Kadi, Mehsana: At least two persons were killed and another injured as fresh violence erupted in Kadi taluka town of Mehsana district, prompting the au- thorities to impose indefinite curfew in the area. A person who was eating by a way- side kiosk on the outskirts of Kadi town was killed and the owner of the kiosk in- jured in a bomb explosion. In a related incident, a bus conductor was burnt alive. Two unidentified persons, who had covered their faces with turbans, came to the kiosk to buy food, when they hurled the bomb before escaping with the food. The customer, belonging to the majority community, died on the spot, while the kiosk owner, from a minority community, was injured.

As tension mounted in the town, a mob gathered at Kundal village between Kadi and Chhatral Road and intercepted a state transport bus. The irate mob then pulled out the conductor, a Muslim, from the bus, and burnt him alive.

May 29, Ahmedabad: Panic gripped Ahmedabad following a series of bomb blasts aboard three buses. Two live bombs were also found in two other buses and were defused. Eleven persons, seven of them women, were injured in the three explosions that went off almost simultaneously on three routes between 10 and 10.15 a.m., the peak traffic hour. Three of the injured, including the driver of one of the buses, received critical injuries. Two bomb disposal squad men were injured when one of the bombs went off while being defused. The explosions ripped open the sides of two buses and the roof of another was blown off and found 500 metres away. Two bombs exploded in the posh Gurukul and Vasna localities while one went off near the bus depot on the Geeta Mandir Road in the old city.

May 15, Rajkot: The city police arrested two persons, including a Junagadh- based Bajrang Dal activist, carrying 99 swords and 200 other sharp weapons, in- cluding knives and daggers, in a jeep. The jeep was detained for checking at Green Land Chowkdi — the junction of roads connecting Rajkot with Ahmedabad, Morbi and Junagadh. Those arrested were identified as Mansukh Kanji Patel, a Junagadh- based Bajrang Dal activist, and jeep driver Dinesh Hasmukh Vekaria, a resident of Rajkot. Police said that a case of violating the notification prohibiting carrying of weapons was registered against them.

Police commissioner Upendra Singh said that Patel was a Bajrang Dal ‘Sangathan Mantri’ of the Joshipura area in Junagadh with 2,000 Bajrang Dal workers under him. Patel worked in the diamond polishing business in Junagadh.

CP Singh said that Patel told police he was taking the weapons to Junagadh for distribution because they “feared retaliation” and that the Junagadh police had been alerted. President of the Junagadh unit of Bajrang Dal, Lalit Suvagiya, who is also joint secretary of the Gujarat Pradesh Bajrang Dal, disowned Patel, saying that he was not a member of the Bajrang Dal. But the Bajrang Dal’s Rajkot city unit chief, Chamanbhai Sindhav, admitted that Mansukh was a Bajrang Dal activist. Sindhav said that Mansukh had bought the weapons for self-protection.

Rajkot police also raided a yard near the Chotila bus stand and seized another cache of swords, knives, and guptis packed in gunny-sacks. Police said 170 swords, 470 knives, and 457 guptis — worth some Rs 1.87 lakh — were found in the yard of the Chauhan brothers. Mansukh Patel, who was arrested in connection with the sei- zure from the jeep, said he had procured the swords from the Chauhans. Two persons were arrested in connection with the Chotila seizure. Police said that Prabhubhai and Channabhai Chauhan had been dealing in swords for the last five years, and would sell them to any buyer. Meanwhile, first class judicial magistrate SM Soni rejected the five-day police remand plea for Mansukh Patel, Bajrang Dal member, arrested by Rajkot police for violating the public notification banning carrying of arms.

May 12, Ahmedabad, Vadodara: In the 75 days post-Godhra, Gomtipur, in Ahmedabad, was under day curfew for almost 43 days while night curfew was in force for almost 60 days. In Vadodara, the situation was only slightly better, with areas like Wadi being under night curfew for 24 days and day curfew for 44 days. The curfew threw up other challenges for people — how to reach office or an examination centre and how to get the daily supplies of milk and vegetables. “While the affluent ones have stored goods in bulk, the poorer sections are in big trouble,” said Ashraaf Khan Pathan of Juni Bapunagar.

May 7, Ahmedabad: The army was called out in Ahmedabad after a fresh out- break of communal violence left twelve persons dead. A youth was stabbed right inside the VS Hospital, run by the Congress-controlled Ahmedabad Municipal Cor- poration, in the presence of police. The youth was stabbed when he alighted from an ambulance carrying a patient who had been stabbed in Juhapura locality, when some Sangh Parivar volunteers were demonstrating against the alleged “partisan attitude” of the hospital authorities against Hindu patients.

While three persons each were killed in Kalupur and Vejalpur localities, two were killed in Juhapura and one each in Jamalpur and Danilimda areas. Perhaps for the first time since the violence began, the night remained largely peaceful and most of the violent incidents took place in broad daylight.

The day began with a stabbing incident in Majoorgam under Kalupur police station and soon the violence spread to the outskirts of the city. A college instructor was stabbed to death and then his body set afire in Sarkhej locality.

This incident had its repercussions in the neighbouring Juhapura and Vejalpur lo- calities, where violent mobs came out on the streets and indulged in stone throwing and attacked passers-by. At least three trucks in Sarkhej and Juhapura localities were set ablaze after their drivers fled.

  • A camel cart owner was stabbed to death in Vejalpur, where two others were killed when police opened fire to disperse the violent mobs. The Juhapura and Vejalpur incidents spread tension in the city with one person was stoned to death near Revdi Bazar in Kalupur. At least seven persons, including three policemen, were injured in a bomb blast near the Kalupur police station. One of the injured later died in hospital. The charred body of a middle-aged person, believed to have been stabbed to death and later set afire, was recovered from Jamalpur.
  • A lecturer of IIT, Sarkhej, was intercepted by four people while on his way to work and burnt alive. MA Kothawala, (35) was going to work on his two-wheeler. It was his beard that gave him away. As he slowed down his scooter, he was stopped by four people who stabbed him and them burnt him alive.
  • A truck driver, unaware of the trouble in Sarkhej, drove straight into a mob lying in wait near Juhapura. He was also burnt alive.
  • Two daily-wagers cycling to work from Dhor Bazaar were pelted with stones and then bludgeoned to death.
  • Two residents of Parikshitalal Nagar, Behrampura, on their way home were burnt alive by a mob on May 5.

While mobs attacking entire neighbourhoods was part of the pattern during the first phase of violence in Ahmedabad, a new pattern emerged in the incidents that took place round early May: that of mobs targeting unsuspecting individuals. Police said this could be because of the long spell of violence that had deepened the divide. In the incidents of early May, innocent citizens, educated people, were waylaid by mobs and done to death. Ironically, most of these people were either on their way to work or were hurriedly returning home on hearing reports of violence in the city.

May 7, Bhavnagar: Tension gripped Bhavnagar city when groups of people from both the Hindu and Muslim communities were involved in stone throwing. However, timely action by the police prevented the situation from escalating further. According to police control room, it all started when a youth, who was drunk, came out on the streets in the Karchaliya Para area in Bhavnagar with a sword. Police said that this created tension as people from both the communities came out on the streets with swords in their hands. On May 6, a group of people had set a medical shop located in the Khumbhariya Wada area on fire.

May 7, Vadodara: The JP Road police recovered a crude “bomb” from a footpath on the Old Padra Road. The bomb made from urea, a gelatine stick and detonator seemed to have been left at the spot to create panic in the area. According to the city police, the bomb was recovered following a tip-off. “A parcel with a wick was lying deserted on the footpath. As a precautionary measure, the bomb squad was called to tackle it,” an officer said. Officials at the J P Road police station said the bomb must have been placed by some mischief-monger to create panic in the area. “The so-called bomb was otherwise harmless. It did not contain nails or similar articles to injure a person,” said JP Road police inspector Kiritsinh Jhala.

May 7, Panchmahal: Shops were set on fire and members of two communities clashed at Lunavada town in Panchmahal district, prompting the imposition of in- definite curfew in the area. Following the bomb explosion in a bus which injured 10 people on May 6, incidents of stone throwing and arson were reported during the day. Indefinite curfew was clamped on the town.

May 6, Panchmahal: As many as ten people were injured, including three women and an infant, were injured, five of them seriously, when a country-made bomb ex ploded in a Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation bus at Lunavada bus stand, nearly 40 km from Godhra. The incident took place at 1200 hrs when the bus, sched- uled for Malvan, was parked at the stand for the 30-odd passengers to board. Five of the injured, including the conductor Hirabhai Vanand, were in serious condition and were shifted to the civil hospital. The incident has spread panic and tension in Lunavada and surrounding areas. Witnesses stated that the explosion could have occurred in the abandoned baggage of a passenger.

May 6, Ahmedabad: Two youths were stoned to death in the Kagdapith area of Ahmedabad. “The youths were stopped by an armed mob and lynched,” a senior police officer said. They were two factory workers, who were proceeding to their workplace on cycles, and then lynched as sporadic incidents of violence continued unabated in the state. With this the death toll in two days of violence has gone up to ten. The incident took place around 10 a.m. in the Kagdapith police station area. As the victims were leaving their houses on cycle, they were surrounded by an irate mob, which resorted to heavy stone pelting. “They bled to death on the spot,” the police said.

Police burst several tear gas shells to disperse a crowd near a mosque in Mirzapur area where two crude bombs exploded while a prayer session was on, setting off tension in the locality. The bombs exploded on the road outside the mosque. No one was injured in the blast. Indefinite curfew, meanwhile, remained in force at Danilimda and Shahpur, two of the worst affected localities of Ahmedabad.

May 5, Ahmedabad: After three days of calm, tension gripped the city of Ahmedabad when rioters went on the rampage in Shahpur, Madhavpura and Danilimda areas, forcing the police to open fire. Seven people were killed.

According to police, the body of a person with stab wounds was dumped outside the RSS headquarters by miscreants who came in a Maruti car around midnight.

May 3, Jamnagar: Tension mounted in Varvala village of Dwarka taluka, Jamnagar district, after miscreants desecrated temples in the village. Heavy police deployment was made in the area soon after that, to prevent any untoward incident as villagers observed a bandh to voice their protest.

May 2, Bharuch: Tension mounted in Bharuch district after some assailants riding a motorcycle shot at a BJP worker in Ankleshwar town. Sources in the Ankleshwar city police said that the victim, Ganesh Agrawal, who was an active worker of the BJP and owns a provision store, was shot at by unidentified assailants. Sources said that Agrawal had earlier been named as an accused in two cases of rioting in the aftermath of the Godhra carnage.

April 16, Ahmedabad: Even 48 hours after communal incidents began, large parts of Ahmedabad still remained under curfew.

April 15, Ahmedabad: Two persons were shot dead by the police at Dariapur. The police of the Dariapur police station assisted a mob pelting stones at minority pockets in the area. A local resident, Ayub Khan Pathan, had his head blown off when he simply stepped out to take a snapshot and get photographic evidence of police misdemeanours. The violence continued between Delhi Darwaza and Shahibag (where incidentally the commissioner of police’s headquarters are located) and the targets were – Kanikhad Muslim Mohalla (where 80 households live) and Sajjan Jamadar Mohalla (where 200-250 families live). There were two terror attacks, by mobs of 15-20 and 100-200 respectively, Std. VIII and IX students belonging to the minority community, who were giving examina- tions in two separate examination centres at Delhi Darwaza.

April 5, Vadodara: In a shocking example of violence by armed mobs roaming the streets of Gujarat, a convoy of five vehicles carrying families from Chhotaudaipur to Vadodara under police escort was attacked by a mob en route, which set all the ve- hicles on fire. At least three persons suffered serious burn injuries and a policeman, who was attacked with sharp weapons, was also grievously hurt. The families, who had been stuck in an unsafe area for six days, were being shifted to Vadodara by the police in three trucks, a tempo and a rickshaw.

April 4, Umreth, Anand district, Kutch: Two persons were killed and two injured in police firing in Umreth town of Anand district, where rioting mobs burnt down about 10 shops. Police fired 20 rounds and imposed indefinite curfew in the afternoon.

  • Kutch, which had been peaceful so far, also witnessed violence. Indefinite curfew was clamped in Anjar after mobs damaged three places of worship.

April 3, Ahmedabad: Police, under PI SD Sharma, in the presence of Mr. Parmar of the Ahmedabad collectorate, led a violent attack on the 750 refugees of the Suleiman Roza Relief Camp (behind Nutan Mills), Saraspur and actually shot two persons, Pirujbhai Mohammad Sheikh (30) and Khatoonbi Sharfuddin Saiyed (45). The camp, which had been home to 750 displaced persons over the past 40 days, was thus forc- ibly wound up.

29 innocents were shot at by the RAF and SRP forces. Advocate Nizam was shot dead by the police inside his home and Dr. Ishaq Sheikh, vice-president of the Al Ameen Garib Niwas Hospital, was pulled out of his ambulance by the Ahmedabad police, SRP and RAF personnel and brutally beaten up. Police inspectors Modi and Parmar were present while this happened and did nothing to stop the assault. Another person shot dead in police firing, Mohammad Yunus Akbarbhai, hailed from Sakhar Ghanchi Ki Chawl. The policemen named by eyewitnesses are NA Modi (PSI D Staff), NR Jadhav, senior police inspector and DCP Sawani.

April 3, Abasna, Ahmedabad rural: Five members of a Muslim family were burnt to death late at night in Abasna village. Three houses were burnt down and five members of the same family, including a baby girl, were hacked to death and then set ablaze by an unruly mob of around 15-20 persons at about 12.30 am. The Kadi police reached the spot at 2.30 a.m.

In another incident of violence in Ahmedabad, in broad daylight and in the heart of this city, 34-year-old Muhammad Riyaz Qureshi was hacked to death near the Shahpur police post, apparently because he was married to a Hindu. There was heavy police deployment in the area but the policemen saw nothing, heard nothing and did nothing. April 2, Ahmedabad: In the course of the past week, mobs set fire to over 50 Ahmedabad houses whose residents wait in relief camps. The police in the city of Ahmedabad just did not stop them. They said that fire spreads too fast and that they were short of staff. Fifty houses were set on fire at Behrampura in the Danilimda area; they had been vacated by fleeing residents on February 28. About 500 yards away are the Behrampura police outpost and an additional police picket but that didn’t help much when the mob got to work. Homes in Rajpur, Gomtipur, Ramol, Syedwadi, Vatwa and Madhavpura were gutted. A mob of not less than 10-15,000 attacked homes at Vejalpur and Juhapura.

April 2, Cambay, Petlad, Kadi, Mehsana: Three persons were killed in police firing all over Gujarat. At least one person was killed in Cambay and Petlad towns in Kaira area in police firing and one was stabbed to death in Kadi town in Mehsana district, as violence re-erupted in the curfew-bound towns late at night. At least three persons were killed in Cambay and Petlad in police firing earlier in the day to control mob violence. A mob set on fire at least eight houses at Adundara village near Kadi in Mehsana district even as curfew continued in Kadi town.

  • Disturbances spread to newer areas such as Narsanda, Boriyavi, Chaklasi and other small towns and villages in central and north Gujarat where mobs set fire to houses and shops belonging to a minority community and tried to damage some places of worship.

March 31, Ahmedabad: About 60 houses in two chawls on Danilimda Road in Behrampura were gutted following arson resorted to by residents of Pathani Ni Chali and Ghasiram Chali after a minor incident of stone throwing between two groups. Po- lice fired about 31 rounds and 156 tear gas shells in the area to control the situation.

March 30, Ahmedabad: A 25,000 strong mob gathered at CTM Amraiwadi, at the junction of Vatwa and Jantanagar Ramol and Ansaribagh and tried to attack Gomtipur, Jhumli Chawl, Najor Road, Vora Chal and Sukhram Road. For residents, the terror continued late into the night.

March 29, Ahmedabad: Two Kashmiris were allegedly burnt alive by rioters dur- ing communal clashes in Ahmedabad. They were identified as Sareer Ahmad of Gohan- Kokernag and Isfaq Ahmad of Vesu-Qazigund. Reports said the former was a truck driver while the latter a cleaner. They were on their way from Kashmir to Ahmedabad in their vehicle, loaded with Kashmiri apples. As the truck entered Ahmedabad, a mob stopped it. When the miscreants discovered that the driver and the cleaner were Kashmiris, they severely thrashed the duo. Their truck was set ablaze and subse- quently the two were burnt alive.

March 29, Kadi, Mehsana: The 200 residents at the Kadi Relief camp near Kalol were attacked by a large mob at midnight.

March 26, Godhra: A month after the Godhra tragedy, things had still not re- turned to normal in Godhra city. Every day, violence breaks out in new areas. There was trouble in Khadia and Ramol areas and two incidents of stabbing were reported from Ranip and Shaherkotda areas.

March 24, Rajkot: An 18-year-old student, who was on his way to write his HSC examination, was stabbed by two unidentified assailants, leading to ten- sion in the communally sensitive Dhoraji area. The student, Ashok Lakhabhai Ahir, was first taken to Junagadh and later shifted to Rajkot. Doctors said his condition was serious.

March 24, Ahmedabad: A 30-year-old woman was stripped in public and stabbed to death in the Vejalpur area of Ahmedabad as violence continued un- abated in Gujarat. Mumtazbano, whose maiden name was Geeta, before she mar- ried a Muslim, was stopped by miscreants at Vejalpur when she was going out with her husband on a scooter. She was stripped and stabbed to death. Her husband was admitted to the VS Hospital with serious knife injuries.

March 24, Ahmedabad: The Revdi Bazaar in Panchkuva area of Ahmedabad was transformed into a raging inferno when manic rioters set shops afire. The mar- ketplace, which houses wholesale cloth shops, erupted into flames which took the Ahmedabad Fire Brigade more than five hours to control. Though no casualties were reported, local shopkeepers said the damage could well cross Rs. 15 crore.

  • Fresh violence erupted in Bhavnagar, Jambusar (Bharuch district) and Prantij (Sabarkantha district) towns and indefinite curfew was imposed there.

March 22, Vadodara, Ahmedabad: Curfew was again imposed in six police sta- tion areas of Vadodara as three people were killed when violence flared up in the city. A 35-year-old man, reportedly a tailor, was found with his throat slit near the Lal Akhada in the Fatehpura area of Vadodara. The second case of stabbing was re- ported in the Dandia Bazar area of the city. The person, who ran an English class at Apsara Apartments, was attacked at his office in the afternoon.

  • In Ahmedabad, one person was killed and three others injured in stabbing incidents in the Kagdapith and Gomtipur areas.
  • In Ahmedabad, Ghanibhai, who cooked food for the 7,000 residents of the Shah-e-Alam Relief Camp, was brutally killed by youths from just outside the ghetto area, where he had gone to buy a basket used to clean rice.
  • Incidents of violence and arson were reported from some areas of north Gujarat.

March 21, Ahmedabad, Himmatnagar: Six persons were killed in renewed violence in Ahmedabad. Five persons were killed in police firing at Kalupur, (Usman Ghani Memon, Arif Mansoori, Fakir Aakha Ali Shaikh, Mohammad Aslam, Mani), while one person was stabbed to death in sporadic incidents of violence in the Dariapur, Karanj and Shahpur areas. Vatwa continued to remain under the grip of tension after the arson at Nava Chunaravas on March 20, when two per- sons were killed in police firing.

  • In Himmatnagar town, one shop was set ablaze in the Motipura area when curfew was relaxed for women and children between noon and 6 p.m.

March 20, Ahmedabad, Himmatnagar: At least two people were killed in po- lice firing in the Vatwa area of Ahmedabad and indefinite curfew was clamped in Himmatnagar town in Sabarkantha district.

  • Mobs went on the rampage in Vatwa, torching several hutments and cabins by firing petrol bombs before the police moved in and restored order. u Violence spread in Himmatnagar town in Sabarkantha district, after the disap pearance of a boy, sparked violence.

March 18, Bharuch: Four persons, including two belonging to the minority community, were killed when police opened fire to disperse mobs in Bharuch and Sabarkantha districts as fresh bouts of communal violence hit parts of Gujarat. Two persons were killed and as many seriously injured when police fired on a stone pelting mob in the sensitive Undai-Haji Khana locality of Bharuch, which was rocked by a fresh spell of violence since March 17, when two persons were stabbed to death. With this, the death toll in the latest spell of violence in the town went up to four.

March 17, Ahmedabad: Even 17 days after the Godhra carnage, Ahmedabad had not calmed down. Incidents of arson, rioting and loot were reported from the Danilimda and Dudheshwar areas. One person died in police firing while three others, including a Home Guard of state civil defence, sustained serious stab wounds in Danilimda. Around 2 p.m., a 1,000 strong mob went on the rampage and set fire to two textile- dye manufacturing units in Danilimda. Prior to this, the mob also damaged three shops and set fire to four vehicles.


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