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Dec 26, 2013 at 02:34pm IST

2002 Gujarat riots: Court order on SIT clean chit to Modi after 3 pm

Ahmedabad: It is judgement day for Bharatiya Janata Party Prime Ministerial candidate and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi after 3 pm on Thursday as a local court in Ahmedabad is likely to decide on whether the SIT clean chit in his favour in the 2002 Gujarat riots should be upheld. The order is to be passed on a protest petition by Zakia Jafri, a riot victim.

The Ahmedabad magisterial court will decide whether or not a criminal case stands against the Gujarat Chief Minister for his role in the 2002 communal riots. While the SIT says it has found no evidence whatsoever, Zakia Jafri has argued that there is adequate evidence to prosecute Modi and others who include police officers, bureaucrats and political leaders.

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According to Zakia's protest petition, "Modi instructed top officials to allow Hindus to vent their anger on Muslims after the Godhra train burning incident. IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt's affidavit supports this allegation. Modi indulged in hate speeches that amounted to creating enmity between communities. Ministers were posted at police control rooms to interfere with effective police functioning."

"It has been a long wait for justice. Now that an order is expected, I am hopeful that justice will be done and the court will accept my protest petition," Zakia Jafri said.

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Following the September 2011 Supreme Court order, the SIT filed a closure report in the magisterial court in February 2012. SIT lawyer RS Jamuvar said that the investigation agency did not find any evidence against Modi and hence the closure report had been filed.

Irrespective of what the order is, it will be challenged in a higher court. But personally for Modi, the order will be significant especially since he has set his cap to be India's next Prime Minister.

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