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Gujarat: SIT files chargesheet against Teesta Setalvad, 2 others

There are 53 witnesses including many who once worked closely with Setalvad

Gujarat: SIT files chargesheet against Teesta Setalvad, 2 others

The special investigation team (SIT) has filed a voluminous chargesheet against social activist Teesta Setalvad, former DGP R B Sreekumar and ex-IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt for fabrication of evidence to establish conspiracy behind the 2002 riots to frame "innocent" persons, including the then chief minister Narendra Modi.

The SIT has cited 90 witnesses in support of its accusations and included seven witnesses who have recorded their statements before judicial magistrates under the provisions of section 164 of the CrPC, making the testimonies a material evidence.

There are 53 witnesses including many who once worked closely with Setalvad, including a couple of advocates and riot survivors.

The witnesses cited include Raiskhan Pathan, her former aide who turned against her later, and survivors of Gulbarg Society, Naroda Gam, Ode village, Sardarpur and Best Bakery massacres of the post-Godhra riots.

These include prime witness Imtiyazkhan Pathan of the Gulbarg Society massacre; Yasmin Shaikh, the sister-in-law of Zaahira Shaikh, prime witness in Best Bakery case in Vadodara, former IPS officer Rahul Sharma who had briefly contributed in the probe of riots cases of Ahmedabad by obtaining mobile call records etc.

There are 22 police witnesses named in the chargesheet.

They include the then SIT members A K Malhotra, who filed an interim report in the SC, and Himanshu Shukla, who filed a summary report on the complaint of Zakia Jafri, wife of former MP Ehsaan Jafri who was killed in Gulbarg massacre.

The closure report was upheld by all courts and SC's remarks to put those who "kept pot boiling" in the dock led to filing of the FIR against the accused on June 25.

The witness cops included some of those who probed post-Godhra riots cases.

The chargesheet names four FSL scientists and listed 11 documents, nine affidavits that Sreekumar filed before the Godhra riots inquiry commission, the email that Bhatt sent to different people including the then leader of the opposition in the state assembly, Shaktisinh Gohil with whom he was allegedly in contact, to create evidence to substantiate his claim that he was present in the February 27, 2002 meeting at Modi's residence.

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