February 6, 2012
Justice SH Kapadia
Hon. Chief Justice of India
Supreme Court of India
Subject : Gujarat's people protest against the closure of Zakia Jafri / CJP Case by SIT in Gujarat.
It is going to be 10 years of Gujarat Riot. Due to the absence of rule of law the justice is eluded the riot victims. Thanks to the steps taken by SC to reopen the cases. The appointment of Mr. Raghavan in SIT followed by the appointment of Mr.Raju Ramchandran as the Amicus Curiae, raised hope that justice will finally prevail in Gujarat
But the way SIT is functioning and probing the cases has made us apprehensive about it's genuine interest to book the culprit. From the media we have come to know that the SIT is going to close the files of certain cases , particularly of Zakia Jafri. Being concerned we the citizens are drawing your attention
We have come to know that the Special Investigation Team (SIT) is planning to file a closure report. It appears that the SIT is performing a pre-determined task rather than working with a diligent and open mind. The failure of the SIT to identify the Perpetrators in the face of clinching evidence will send a dangerous signal----that despite the highest level interventions, the Indian system allows the guilty to go unpunished. This will signal the end of hope. The SIT has first and foremost inexplicably delayed the filing of a charge sheet as directed by the Honorable Supreme Court in September 2011. (12.9.2011). SIT was reprimanded by the apex court in March 2011 for "ignoring inferences in the evidence "and when even after this reprimand, the SIT failed to measure up, the by an order dated 5.5.2011 was given a free hand to meet witnesses including policemen, bypassing the SIT. This meant that the SC asked for an independent assessment of the available evidence.
Now reliable sources as reported in the media say, that despite voluminous evidence and Recommendations by Amicus Curiae of the Supreme Court ( Shri Raju Ramachandran) to prosecute the Chief Minister Modi and his collaborators (politicians and policemen) for the anti minority carnage 2002, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) is planning to file a closure report.
If despite the recommendations of the Amicus Curiae, the SIT today files a closure report, this would be first and foremost a blow to the mass indignity suffered by victims and would signal a grave threat to faith in the rule of law, democracy the relationships between communities. Faith in our system will be deeply eroded.
It is needless to mention here that A former Chief Justice who headed the National Human Rights Commission, Justice Verma, in 2002 had found the government complicit and recommended that critical cases be handed over to the CBI. A Citizens Tribunal (Crimes Against Humanity) headed by two former judges of the Supreme Court, Justices Krishna Iyer and PB Sawant found the state government and its head responsible for criminal complicity. Two Judges PB Sawant and Hosbet Suresh have even recorded their statements before the SIT.
So as citizens committed to the rule of law we need to raise the following issues:
- • Why the over four month delay in filing the charge sheet as directed by the SC on 12.9.11?
- • Why the reluctance by the SIT to thoroughly probe the issue of destruction and reappearance of critical documentary evidence by senior policemen including police control room records, station diary entries, mobile phone records? (These records have been analysed by complainants/petitioners and placed before the SIT and the Court and are available in the public domain)
- • Why the reluctance of the SIT, to bring on record the statements of available witnesses on meetings that reportedly took place at the chief minister's residence?
- • Finally when the Amicus Curaie Raju Ramachandran has reportedly recommended the prosecution of the CM and his senior officers, where does the SIT find the impunity to exonerate criminals?
Let us not forget that the offences concerned include grave crimes against innocent citizens, in which policemen, administrators and politicians in positions of Constitutional posts, have not only violated their oath but callously allowed lives to be brutally taken, dignity denied. The failure of the SIT to identify the Perpetrators in the face of clinching evidence will send a dangerous signal----that despite the highest level interventions, the Indian system allows the guilty to go unpunished. This will signal the end of hope.
As citizens of Gujarat we write to you concerned that a historic investigation under the supervision of the Supreme Court since 2008 is being subverted by vested interests inimical to the rule of law. This could prove disastrous for lasting and sustainable justice that has to be the prerequisite for peace and harmony.
Chunibhai Vaidhya – Veteran Gandhian – President, Gujarat Lok Samiti
Suresh Mehta – Former – Chief Minister of Gujarat
Illaben Pathak – President, Ahmedabad Women's Action Group (AWAG)
Father Cedric Prakash – Prashant – A Centre for Human Rights, Justice and Peace
Prakash N. Shah – Senior Journalist - Editor - Nirikshak
Dr. Vidhyut Joshi – Former – Vice Chancellor – Bhavnagar University
Gautam Thaker – General Secretary – PUCL (Gujarat)
Dwarikanath Rath – Convener – Movement for Secular Democracy
Swaroop Dhruv – Samvedan Sanskrutik Manch
Dr. Meherunissa Desai - President - Ahmedabad Muslim's Women's Association (AMWA)
Minakshi Joshi – All India Mahila Sanskrutik Sangathan
Shankarbhai Patel – President – Parents Association
Valjibhai Patel – Council for Social Justice
Dilip Chandulal – Convener – Lok Andolan Gujarat
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Encl : Annexures
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