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Riot papers hope for Zakia

Zakia Jafri

New Delhi, Dec. 3: The Supreme Court today directed the special investigation team on the Gujarat riots to examine whether certain documents related to the closure report on Congress leader Ehsan Jafri’s killing could be given to his widow.

The SIT had probed Zakia’s allegation that Narendra Modi and others were involved in Ahmedabad’s Gulbarg Housing Society massacre in which Jafri, a former MP, and over 60 others died but concluded that there was no basis to proceed against the chief minister.

“We direct the SIT chairman to peruse the petition filed by the complainant (Zakia) and apprise us on whether the documents which are part of the closure report can be supplied to the complainant or not,” Justices D.K. Jain and Madan B. Lokur said.

Officer A.K. Malhotra, part of the SIT, told the judges that the agency had submitted all required documents to the apex court in a sealed cover, and was willing to furnish them to Zakia if the bench so desired. However, the judges said they would hear the matter again next Monday.

The SIT had filed the closure report in July this year before the trial court, and the magistrate had last week dismissed Zakia’s plea.

In her apex court appeal, she has contended that the documents are crucial for her to challenge the SIT’s conclusions.

“The petitioner has to file her objections to the closure report. In order to do so, she would need to review the entire material collected by the SIT and the conclusions drawn therein. Being denied the same is hindering her pursuit in filing a protest petition against the closure report.”

Zakia has said that her “complaint relates to a wider conspiracy spanning crimes of great magnitude by state functionaries and involving several locations in Gujarat”.